Liverpool must resist meeting Villarreal strikers’ release clause

Given his record for taking plunges on untested or troublesome strikers, you’d think Brendan Rodgers would tread a little more carefully in the summer transfer window when it comes to plotting his next move in that department.

It seems the lesson is yet to be learned though, as reports emerge that the Northern Irishman is set to trigger a release clause on a one-season La Liga wonder.

Villarreal’s Luciano Vietto has enjoyed a fantastic campaign for the Yellow Submarine this term, scoring 20 goals in 47 all-competition appearances, but remains an inexperienced player at the highest level.

This was the 21-year-old’s first season in European football, having moved to the Spanish club at the start of last term from Argentine outfit Racing Club.

That he only managed 18 goals for them in his two seasons there suggests that last season could well be an anomaly, making £14.2m for the Balnearia native rather costly.

Considering the likes of Fabio Borini, Rickie Lambert and Mario Balotelli were all tried by Rodgers and failed, Divock Origi is yet to arrive at Anfield, jumping in for another unproven front man at some cost seems ill advised.

At least with other Liverpool-linked forwards like Christian Benteke and Danny Ings, Rodgers knows what he is getting to some extent.

Asking a young, foreign forward to come to England, adapt quickly and then produce enough goals to help Liverpool reach the top four would be quite unfair on Vietto.

The Reds are currently rated as 5/2 shots to qualify for the Champions League next season.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.