What’s The Reds’ Record Like In The Winter Sales?

AFTER a season that has promised so much, a downturn in Liverpool’s results, coinciding with a hectic fixture schedule and the swinging open of the January transfer window, has led to many Reds calling for John Henry to crack open the chequebook and buy in some reinforcements.

So far, so quiet. And a perceived inaction to bolster a squad that is starting to look stretched has sparked the well-worn debates, from the ambition of FSG to the philosophy of Jürgen Klopp. A third strand is the January window itself and how useful it is for recruiting talent. How many big players move at this time of year? How good at attracting them to relocate to Merseyside are Liverpool?

The present transfer system was introduced at the start of the 2002-3 campaign. Before then, clubs could trade players throughout the season until March 31.

Since the change was made then, how have Liverpool fared in the January window? Here we detail – and rate – the Reds buys in the winter window from their first in 2003-4 up until the present day. Were they sound, steady or shite?

2003-4

PAUL JONES

Bought on: January 9, 2004

Fee: Loan

Any good? With Chris Kirkland and Jerzy Dudek crocked, Liverpool fan Jones was brought on emergency loan to keep goal. At 36 years, eight months and 23 days old, he was the oldest player to make his debut for the Reds since World War II. He made just two appearances, keeping a clean sheet at Anfield in a 1-0 win versus Aston Villa before conceding two at Spurs in a 2-1 defeat.

Verdict: Steady

2004-5

FERNANDO MORIENTES

Bought on: January 13, 2005

Fee: £6.3m

Any good? The constant clamour for ‘marquee signings’ and ‘making a statement in the transfer market’ are nothing new. And when Liverpool swooped for the three-times Champions League winner from Real Madrid it felt like the Reds had ticked a couple of boxes. He started well enough, dropping the shoulder and unleashing a top-corner finish versus Charlton in his fourth appearance for the club. He followed that with a header against Fulham in the next game. But problems with fitness and ineligibility for Europe saw add only more goal before the end of the season. Despite irregular cameos of his obvious past class, Morientes often looked off the pace and could never convince Rafa Benitez to give him a regular starting role. Sixteen months after he signed, his Anfield career was over.

Verdict: Shite

SCOTT CARSON

Bought on: January 21, 2005

Fee: £1m

Any good? Liverpool battled Chelsea to sign the England Under-21 keeper from Leeds as Dudek’s understudy but with Pepe Reina arriving in the summer, Carson hardly got a sniff, appearing in just nine Liverpool games. He is best remembered for a hero to zero moment versus Juventus in the Champions League quarter-final, keeping The Old Lady at bay only to concede a soft goal to a Fabio Cannavaro header. He moved to West Bromich Albion in 2008.

Verdict: Shite


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