Poor old Rickie Lambert, it feels like ever since he arrived at his boyhood club the starry-eyed Liverpool striker has been unwanted by the manager who brought him to Anfield, with latest rumours placing him in a mooted swap + cash deal.
Brendan Rodgers has reportedly identified Crystal Palace’s rapidly improving winger Yannick Bolasie as one who can enrich his squad ahead of next season.
The Sun suggest the Northern Irishman prefers to offer a sum in the region of £15m, plus the services of Lambert, to bring the overall value of the deal closer to the £20m price tag Palace have bestowed upon him.
Even to those without accountant qualifications, these numbers don’t quite tally though.
Rodgers purchased a then 32-year-old Lambert for £4m, but that value can only have decreased in the ensuing months.
The England striker has been used more sparingly than sugar in wartime up at Anfield and turned 33 in February.
Despite his solid record for goals at Southampton, even generous estimates would place Lambert’s fee in the £2m ball park now.
Finances aside, Alan Pardew’s squad is already blessed with a striker who shares many of Lambert’s attributes and also carries cult status within the club, seriously diminishing the need for such a player.
Glenn Murray’s lower league pedigree of goals is comparable to Lambert’s, while they are both in the same bracket of classic English number nines in terms of style.
However, Murray is two years younger and having overcome a major injury lay-off where his rehabilitation saw him loaned out to Reading earlier in the campaign, he is now proving very capable of stepping up to the Premier League mark.
Murray has netted six times in his last seven top-flight appearances to help the Eagles shimmy the ladder to safety.
Rodgers may have to look elsewhere than Selhurst Park to flog his unwanted forward, while he may need to ask the powers that be for more cash to land Bolasie.
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