Liverpool Message Board
Just wanted to put my two cents in here, I think it is likely that any real gains in performance next season will be from improvements in the players we already have. New signings normally take time to settle and show there best form, we have a number of young players who have been in the team for a year or two who could now start to really pull their weight. Young athletes can make huge strides in a short time, and whilst we can not put expectations of such on any particular player I am hoping that one of the likes of Hendo, Allen, Borini can make a real contribution to the first team next season. However it would be my bet that young Raheem Sterling is where are best hopes lie. That kid looks like he possesses real game changing talent, and I'm really looking forward to seeing him a year older and with a healthy amount of first team prem experience under his belt.
I'm not holding out on us making a marquee signing that will miraculously change our fortunes (Go on FSG surprise me!). More Coutiniho's would be great but that guy is special and by definition that means there aren't many around. Instead I'm looking forward to good coaching and youth policy taking effect next season. Let Tottenham and Arsenal spend as much money as they want on media darlings and big team flops, I won't be jealous. If I had to choose I'd much rather be a Dortmund fan than pay to watch the sky blue millionaires club.
Am I a hopeless optimist, always. Next season IS our season.
I tend to agree with you that Raheem is the one player most likely to make a major leap forward, although I'd try not to put too much weight on his shoulders. I do expect him to step up and improve, but we also need to remember he's still very young and has plenty of time to develop, and will still make mistakes as he builds game experience.
But I'd also look at players coming up from the reserves, those who've been on the fringes of the first team, and those who came into the club last year, but have not yet reached what we'd hope is their best performance. I know some have already given up on the likes of Borini, or Allen, but I'd hope they seize their chance to shine after being with the club for a full year.
The group I'm most interested to see is those that are emerging from the reserves, some of whom have already had some first team experience, but need to push forward and stake their place as regular first team squad members. If BR is true to form, we'll see a lot of these players in pre-season, and after a year of working under the manager they should know they'll get the chance, but now have to take advantage of that chance. Some of these players will need more time in the reserves, some may need to be loaned up to build up experience, and of course we may see some moved on, but I'm hoping we get at least one or two emerging and really staking their claim from the likes of Coates, Kelly, Wisdom, Suso, Sterling, and Yesil up front once he gets himself fit again.