Monday, September 23, 2013

Liverpool Shouldn't Buy Abel Hernandez

Brendan Rodgers received a certain amount of kudos for his work in the recent transfer window.

Though no signing by itself was particularly revolutionizing, key problem areas were addressed.

With Pepe Reina’s recent seasons dampened by glaring errors, sometimes directly responsible for dropping points, it ultimately seemed sensible to replace him.

Similarly, the Reds surged up areas of the squad in which they were thinly stretched, including fullback and centre half positions, and with Iago Aspas, Luis Alberto and Victor Moses added to their attacking options.

Yet, it’s also worth adding they were, reportedly, frustrated in multiple attempts at bringing in some real game changers, players you would expect to be guaranteed first team football: Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Christian Eriksen, Willian and Diego Costa.

Abel Hernandez, on the other hand, is some way off that kind of level, and Liverpool might come to expect a higher calibre of player during the January transfer window, in which the club did some impressive business last year.

This is especially true should Liverpool be in the mix for a fourth place finish, which would enhance their appeal to players tantalized by the prospect of Champions League football next season.

21 goals in 86 appearances over four years is hardly mouth-watering stuff, and although recently Hernandez has notched up four goals in three league appearances, it’s important to remember he’s now operating in Italy’s Serie B.

In last Palermo’s last season in Serie A, however, the Uruguayan forward attained only fourteen appearances, of which Palermo only managed to win two. Among these, Hernandez was unimpressive, providing only one goal and one assist.

On the other hand, Iago Aspas, who might himself be considered a squad player for Liverpool currently, last year produced twelve goals and seven assists.

On paper, his seven goals in ten international appearances, since 2009, amounts to an impressive goals per game ratio.

However, upon closer inspection, all seven were scored across four fixtures and three of these were friendlies. In the remaining fixture, Hernandez effectively found himself partaking in shooting practice against severe underdogs Tahiti in the Confederations cup, in which Uruguay expectedly thrashed their opponents 8 – 0 with Hernandez scoring four.

It’s also been suggested that, due to their shared nationality, Hernandez and Suarez would form something of an exciting partnership.

Unfortunately, in turns out the two haven’t experienced all that much playing time together on the international front. Not once have Suarez and Hernandez been included together in a starting line-up, and the total minutes both on spent on the pitch together amounts only to something like 60 minutes.

Basically, there’s very little to suggest Hernandez and Suarez would become an effective force up front. Nor is there much to indicate Hernandez would improve the squad, should Liverpool choose to pursue to Palermo man. Perhaps, come January, Liverpool should aim a little higher.

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