Five players Liverpool should consider signing to plug their leaky defence

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Despite being the current Premier League top scorers with 70 goals, Liverpool’s defence is in need of some improvement, with the Reds having also conceded the most goals in the top seven.

Their 4-3 win over Swansea City last weekend, was an example of this, with their on-form attack saving them from a defeat which the defence perhaps could have stopped.

With 11 games remaining in the league campaign, The Reds are just four points off league leaders Chelsea and have been tipped as surprise title contenders.

But Kolo Toure, a player who has been at the heart of the majority of their defensive calamities this season has admitted that their defence must improve if they are to stay in contention for the Premier League crown.

The Ivorian told the Liverpool Echo: “If you want to be in the top four or win the league, you need to defend well. We are scoring a lot of goals but for sure we need to get a better balance.”

So although it won’t make a difference this season, read below to find out which players The Reds need to consider signing in the summer to avoid similar troubles next season.

1. Steven Caulker – Cardiff City

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Steven Caulker only joined Cardiff last summer for around £8 million after finding his first-team chances at Tottenham Hotspur limited.

He has been a regular for the Welsh side this season, playing all 27 league matches so far, but with his team struggling near the foot of the table there is a good chance this could be their only season back in the top flight.

Should they get relegated, it is unlikely that Caulker will hang around for long as he has shown he is definitely Premier League quality.

The stats back his contribution. Caulker has blocked more shots (38) than any other outfield player in the Premier League this season and Curtis Davies is the only other defender to have won more aerial duels than him.

He is certainly an option that Liverpool need to consider, and Brendan Rodgers knows what the 22 year old is all about after having him on loan at Swansea in 2011-12.

2. Luke Shaw – Southampton

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Because of the high interest surrounding Luke Shaw at the moment, the Southampton left-back is perhaps the hardest player for the Reds to get – but it is not an impossible deal.

The fact that the 18 year old got his first call-up to the England squad this week has only added to his potential and value.

Despite the interest from both Manchester clubs and Chelsea for the youngster, don’t rule out Liverpool’s chances of getting him, but Southampton will do as much as they can to keep him in the summer.

Aly Cissokho is likely to return to Valencia once his season long loan at Anfield has been completed so Rodgers is looking for a quality, natural replacement, instead of having to play either Glen Johnson or Martin Kelly on a flank that is opposite to both’s most common side.

Furthermore, Rodgers is said to be a big fan of the 18-year-olds and has been keeping an eye on him all throughout the campaign after witnessing a series of impressive displays for the Saints.

3. Ashley Williams – Swansea City

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A player Brendan Rodgers managed at Swansea City; Ashley Williams is the current captain at the Liberty Stadium as well as the skipper of Wales.

The Reds boss had been linked with making a move for the 29 year old last summer, as had Arsenal, but a concrete move failed to materialise, but he is still thought to be interested in working with him again and will return again this time around with a renewed bid to bolster his defensive options.

Spurs have also been linked with the big stopper, but Rodgers is said to be in the lead having worked with the player during their time together in south Wales.

With a value of around £7 million, the Swans would be making a profit of at least £6.5 million if they sold him at or above what he is worth. Garry Monk may be hesitant to let his captain go though as he has been a crucial player for his side this season.

4. Kevin Constant – AC Milan

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Kevin Constant is a midfielder by trade but has been operating as a left-back in recent months for Milan, where he has been impressed, with the 26 year old even featuring at centre-back on occasions.

But despite a string of promising performances, he has asked to leave the club at the end of the season and Milan are offering him around European clubs.

Tall, strong and athletic, the Guinea international could provide cover across the midfield and defence.

Reports in Italy suggest Milan want as little as £3million to let Constant go and Brendan Rodgers would be happy to pay that amount if the player wanted to move to England.

Everton and Borussia Dortmund have previously been linked with the player, who almost completed a loan switch to Napoli in January,

Constant also hit the headlines during the summer when he walked out of a match because of racist abuse from the crowd.

5. Adil Rami – AC Milan (on loan from Valencia)

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A teammate of Constant’s, Adil Rami is only on loan at the San Siro but is expected to leave his parent club Valencia in the summer.

He is keen to stay at Milan, but that won’t stop clubs bidding for the experienced defender, who is valued at around £7 million.

He has nearly 300 top-flight appearances spanning three of the five major European leagues, more than a dozen Champions League appearances and 26 caps on the French national team.

With Liverpool’s tall defenders proving a threat at set-pieces this season, Rami would fit a similar role perfectly, with his areal presence earning him two goals in six games since his loan switch.

Plenty of great interceptions and bone-crunching tackles have also already made him a fan favorite among the San Siro faithful, as is his passing range for someone of his stature and position.

Definitely someone to look at if Milan don’t intend on signing him permanently.

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This article is also being published on Touchline Talk, the website I write for. You can look at previous pieces of mine here:

http://www.touchlinetalk.com/author/olly-allen/

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