The hope with transfer season is that the new face can add some talent and flavour to the existing crop. However, it doesn’t always play out as expected. Players fail to reach the levels expected of them and they soon become transfer flops. Let’s take a look at Liverpool and some of the worst transfers to ever grace the club.
Signed as a replacement for Fernando Torres, Carroll arrived at the same time as Luis Suarez. However, he did not quite hit the same heights as Suarez. He is the most expensive signing on this list having arrived for £35 million from Newcastle in 2011. A big old-fashioned centre-forward, he had his moments in the red shirt, including an incredible performance against Manchester City and scoring the winner in an FA Cup semi-final against Everton. However, the highlights stopped there. Carroll had several fitness problems and couldn’t get a in decent run with the squad. During his time at Liverpool, Carroll scored 11 goals in 58 games. The arrival of Brendan Rodgers in 2012 sealed his exit. Carroll eventually returned to former club West Ham for £15 million where he continues to be plagued by injuries.
Arriving to much fanfare after scoring for Senegal at the 2002 World Cup, Diouf was seen as a brilliant transfer for Liverpool. The player cost £10 million from Lens. Diouf started his Reds career on a high scoring twice on his debut against Southampton but then followed that up with disappointing performances and controversies for the rest of his time at the club. In his defence, Diouf was mostly stationed to the right of midfield which as an attacker wasn’t his best position; however, his on-field behaviour such as spitting at a Celtic fan in a UEFA Cup tie did not particularly help his case. Diouf then went on to attain the unfortunate record of being the only Liverpool number 9 to fail to score a goal for an entire season of 2003/2004. His record for the club is six goals in 80 appearances. He left the club in 2004 for Bolton for an undisclosed fee with many at Liverpool not particularly saddened by his departure.
The Italian arrived as a replacement for Real Madrid fan favourite Xabi Alonso. Aquilani cost £20 million from Roma in 2009. Undoubtedly talented, he had big shoes to fill and it was hoped that he would prove a worthy successor to Alonso. However, this did not come to come to pass as Aquilani had constant injuries and never quite reached the fitness levels required for the Premier League. Aquilani scored two goals in 28 appearances for the Reds. The midfielder was later allowed to embark on a series of loan spells to try and rebuild his career before eventually joining Fiorentina for £7 million in 2012.
Balotelli was a surprise signing for Liverpool, and indeed for the entire Premier League. A controversial player who was rarely out of the headlines, the Italian was brought in by Brendan Rodgers. Rodgers later admitted that he had not wanted the player. This bizarre turn of events meant that someone up the Liverpool hierarchy had envisioned Balotelli as a potential replacement for Luis Suarez and had sanctioned the transfer. Balotelli cost £16 million from AC Milan. The Italian scored three goals in 16 appearances for Liverpool in his first season before being loaned out to AC Milan for the 2015/2016 season.
Signed during the 2015 summer raid of Southampton, which saw former Southampton players Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana move to Liverpool, Lovren proved to be an expensive flop. He cost £20 million to improve their defence; however, his impact was hardly felt. Lovren was a starter for the first 12 games of the 2014/2015 season and Liverpool lost six of those games. Lovren had a terrible defensive record and was prone to errors. He has since played 44 games with no goals for Liverpool.
Arrived from Juventus as a replacement for Javier Mascherano. Poulsen had been a decent player at previous club Juventus and had also worked with then Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson at Copenhagen. However, he did not quite make it at Liverpool. He was widely viewed as not being a good enough replacement for Mascherano; lacking the pace and energy needed to be impactful in the Premier League. He left a year later for Evian after 21 appearances and no goals.
Arriving from Tottenham in the summer of 2008, Robbie Keane was an expensive buy for the club at £20 million. Big things were expected of him. Keane did have some memorable moments in the red shirt, such as a debut goal in the Champion’s League against PSV Eindhoven and a magnificent strike in a draw against Arsenal. However, he didn’t fit into Rafael Benitez’s Liverpool squad and ended up moving back to Tottenham six months later for £13 million. His Liverpool record stood at five goals in 19 appearances.
These may be some of the worst transfers in the club’s history, but there are promising signings on the horizon. Jese Rodriguez is leaving Real Madrid and Liverpool is rumoured to be first in line. You can bet using a Vulcun promotion code whether they snap him up.