Do Liverpool Really Want Eto’o?

The rumors have begun to churn: Benitez wants to go after Samuel Eto’o in the summer. The Barcelona striker has already scored 25 goals in 27 matches for his club this season, but could the Camaroon international find a place at Liverpool?

With Fernando Torres and Steven Gerrard both in great form and leading the Red attack, adding Eto’o to the side would involve a reshuffling of Liverpool’s best approach which thrives on Gerrard slotting in behind Torres. Adding a second true striker to the starting eleven would push Gerrard back into central midfield or into a wide position. While Gerrard is versatile enough to play well anywhere on the pitch, Liverpool are at their most dangerous when he is able to steam in on goal, creating and finishing chances at will. Gerrard can play on the wing—but he shouldn’t.

If the rumors are true, perhaps Benitez envisions something like Barcelona’s approach with Eto’o, having him in essentially a three-man attack with Henry and Messi. Would Torres, Eto’o and Gerrard be Liverpool’s front line? Or, with Liverpool’s penchant for using full backs in attack this season, we might see a kind of 5212, with Aurelio and Arbeloa shifting into wing back roles while Gerrard supports the strikers.

Can room be made for another top quality frontman?

Whether Liverpool pursue Eto’o or somebody else, that question needs to be asked. Liverpool could win most of their matches if both Gerrard and Torres are consistently fit throughout the next season, but as Liverpool have learned painfully this year, they cannot rely on that.

More quality needs to be added this summer and Rafael Benitez must factor in an insurance policy or two in case Torres or Gerrard picks up a long term injury in the next campaign. But purchasing a player like Eto’o merely for cover wouldn’t make sense. If Liverpool want to maintain their current, effective formation, a strong striker who doesn’t mind being second string is in order. Samuel Eto’o is not likely to come to Liverpool to sit on the bench while Fernando Torres scores the goals.

Perhaps a Zaki or a Santa Cruz who can produce but aren’t as high profile would sacrifice regular starts for the chance to play for a side that could win the title. Or, allowing Babel to play his original role of striker more regularly could be the answer. Benitez spent Babel’s first year converting the dutch attacker to winger. Perhaps it is time to convert him back to cover or support Fernando Torres, depending on what is needed.

Chelsea FC and Manchester United have been the main title contenders for years because they maintain a squad of deep quality. Spending the money on more top class attack could be an important step for Liverpool to develop a side that can fight for the top prize year after year. I’m not sure Eto’o is the exact answer, but pursuing his level of quality certainly is.

With Eto’o refusing to sign a new contract with Barcelona and his current agreement ending in 2010, the rumors will continue to abound concerning the 28-year-old’s future. It will be some time before we know Rafael Benitez’s plans for Liverpool in the next window, but the speculation keeps things interesting.

9 thoughts on “Do Liverpool Really Want Eto’o?”

  1. I think we should leave mr.Benitez’s to make his decision of his own choice and selection the way he overlook the team not to confusion him we should put our surpport and moral to him.please look the choice which leggazzet made compare of coaches in the world and he has been choosed one of the best coach in the world. so whatever he think or choose a player it is him who will arrange and make the team good.he is one who do his homework day by day for the sake of team.Eto’o is world class player we cannot depend only Torres in fully year there is injurys and fitness for one Torres we should think this not only we know to blame mr.Benetiz’s whatever he make move we should support him not discarage him.We choose him to be coach for our team if not then we should take over as coach of team insted of him.he is excellent man and he do his work not because he get paid but he love people of liverpool fans and the team so we should respect his desicion so we can make team to be strong.

  2. babel should be a willing & able backup for torres at this point….at the least he be playing a more prominent role in the squad next season or he should be sold….ive been waiting for the torres & babel combo up front for quite some time now…….i cant see eto’o coming to liverpool.whoever is brought in will have to gel with torres,or be happy playing second fiddle….thats not eto’o.dont be surprised to see santa cruz or crouchy in a liverpool kit next season.

  3. Ethan, championship winning sides have more than two quality strikers in their line-ups. Eto’o coming in would ensure injuries to either himself or Torres do not affect the rhythm of the team. It will also give Torres a chance to be rested even when he is not injured. Babel and Torres are not enough for the entire season. I know fans like to see Torres all the time but he is not a machine and surely needs a rest here and there and would do with more quality around him. The reason why Liverpool are in the position they are in at the moment instead of not having wrapped the league up yes is because of the lack of quality in the squad. ManU are talking about a chance of winning five trophies with reason because they have the squad to do so. I am afraid Liverpool will not dream of that in the next foreseeable future because of lack of depth in the squad. Arsenal, Chelsea, ManU have at least 3 strikers in their squads and obviously a number of Babels and Ngogs for cover if need be. Surely buying Eto’o will never be a negative if a club wants to win major titles. Torres needs help to win titles with Liverpool. He is not the Messiah that some fans on these boards seem to think he is. If anything he will appreciate a quality striker helping him as he must surely regret the lack of depth that has ensured ManU could win the League without a sweat again. YNWA

  4. the 5-2-1-2 would work but only with 2 attacking fullbacks. That Yuri Zirkhov bloke who played for Russia in the euros. He would be a perfect person to play at left wingback. And maybe Rafinha or even Dani Alves at right wing back. Now that would be a team to win the Prem.


  5. eto’o don’t do it!!! please!! we don’t want you on the bench for the rest of next season, meanwhile cleaning torres’ and gerrard’s boots at benitez’s command.

  6. Excuse me 50, but hasn’t Crouchy already worn the great red shirt, only to be sold on to Pompey?

    Ryan Babel has not matured at Liverpool. The rotation of players sems to have rocked his confidence, and unless he shows more of the skill he displayed last season, I suspect he will be moved on in the Summer.

  7. my 5cents worth, 1) eto’o would cost too much
    2) I seriously doubt eto’o and torres will click as a cohesive strike pairing.
    3) An alternative of D.Villa, zaki or santa cruz would be much more suitable. Ok, villa would take time blending in and adjusting to liverpool’s pace, but didn’t we all say the same thing when torres was going to arrive?
    4) can somebody please explain to me again why we let crouch go???…………
    somebody bring the beanpole back………

  8. While the current formation is excellent and effective, we do need more depth to our squad and if that means a reshuffling to accommodate Eto’o or another striker of his class, so be it. A good squad has to able to adapt, and that’s what Liverpool is. As has been said above, we can’t rely on two players all season, it’s just not a viable strategy. I also think we need a more effective right winger too.
    PS. Crouchy left because he wanted to play regularly (something he probably would have done this season, interestingly), Benitez didn’t choose to let him go.

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