Brendan Rodgers is reportedly lining up a £30 million bid for Porto’s prolific frontman Jackson Martinez, according to the Daily Express, which could suggest that the Liverpool boss has already accepted that his £16 million gamble has failed to pay off.
The Colombian striker has scored an impressive 72 games in just 106 games for Porto, earning the interest of a number of Premier League clubs. Arsenal and Chelsea were both linked with Martinez during the summer, however a solid bid failed to materialise.
With Balotelli struggling to perform for Liverpool, the club are already on the look out for a world-class striker to partner Daniel Sturridge up front. The club are struggling for goals following the £75 million departure of Luis Suarez to Barcelona, despite bringing in a number of attacking players throughout the summer.
Liverpool are currently in a rut, as shown in today’s 2-1 home defeat to Chelsea, having secured just 14 points in their first 11 Premier League games of the season, largely down to Balotelli’s inability to slot in during Sturridge’s injury spell. The England striker has been out of action since early September, but has confirmed that he will be available again following the International break, returning to face Crystal Palace on November 23.
Rodgers has stated that Balotelli will be given two months to come good, or face being shown the exit door at Anfield. Should Martinez arrive in January, it will take a large chunk out of Liverpool’s finances, but if he is able to continue in the same vein in the Premier League and secure Liverpool a top four finish, the additional cash provided by securing Champions League football will surely cover the costs.
Martinez announced back in September that any potential deal was out of his hands, but for the time being he is happy in Portugal.
He told reporters, “It is normal to attract interest from other clubs when a player is in good form. But I limit myself to playing and there are other people who take care of the rest.
“Will I continue [at Porto]? Right now, yes.”
However, the offer of a staring role within one of the Premier League’s top clubs could turn heads in Martinez’s camp. Any potential deal will more than likely rely on whether Balotelli manages to impress before the January transfer window opens.