Brendan Rodgers should still be considered one of the transfer market’s winners, though an injury to Glen Johnson has exposed a weakness in the right-back area at Liverpool.
Young Andre Wisdom looks a fine prospect for Liverpool, having coped admirably as a teenager when thrust into the Premier League limelight at right-back last season.
However, his manager has already stated his preference would be to send the now 20-year-old out on loan for at least some of this campaign, while also admitting Wisdom’s future lies at centre-back rather than on the right.
Now this issue has been brought to the fore by the news Liverpool’s first choice right-back Johnson will be sidelined with a knee injury for anything up to 10 weeks.
To lose their raiding right-back is a crushing blow for the Reds after their best start to a Premier League season since the 2008/09 campaign, which has seen them win all three without conceding and subsequently priced at 5/4 to break into the top four with Ladbrokes.
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Indeed, Wisdom was reportedly on the cusp of being released on loan before the injury sustained to Johnson, but in light of further defensive injuries to new recruit Aly Cissokho and veteran Kolo Toure, the kybosh was put on Rodgers’ plans.
This misfortune does beg the question though, of why Rodgers decided to bring in two more centre halves in Mamadou Sakho and Tiago Ilori, rather than anyone in the mould of Johnson?
Although he’s shown promise in a handful of games in each of the last three seasons, Rodgers doesn’t appear to have faith in local lad John Flanagan, while he looks most likely to turn to Martin Kelly, himself having missed nearly the whole of last season through injury.
Like Wisdom, Kelly has shown himself to be an assured defender, but neither one are a naturally attacking full back like Johnson, who is just as comfortable running at players and shooting in the vein of a proper winger.
Liverpool are sure to miss Johnson in the coming weeks and may have missed a trick in failing to properly provide cover for him.
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