Is a move for former England right-back Luke Young a sign of how far Liverpool have fallen or a sign that the consistent and respected defender is finally getting his just rewards?
If all goes to plan the former Tottenham and Charlton player will move from Aston Villa to Anfield for £2.5m – a sum that makes the £18m paid for Glen Johnson seem even more inflated now than it did a year ago.
Young would likely be brought in to play at left-back, a position he successfully filled for Villa last season after an injury to first-choice Wilfred Bouma. Even if Emilio Insua’s proposed move to Fiorentina doesn’t happen it’s unlikely that the Argentine would find himself back in the first-team at Anfield.
Hodgson has the right idea if Young and the recently-signed Joe Cole are an indication of his transfer policy. Yes, Cole is a potentially expensive gamble if his fitness doesn’t hold up but he’s certainly a better free transfer signing than the likes of Maxi Rodriguez who his hard-up predecessor Rafa Benitez was forced to turn to last January.
Hodgson would probably like to sign the likes of Ashley Young and Kevin Doyle but financial woes mean that free transfers and cut-price players like (Luke) Young will have to suffice. And the 62-year old is far too wise to blow his limited budget on players like Shaun Wright-Phillips or David Bentley who have failed to produce in recent years.
Hodgson might not be the man to bring the Premier League to Anfield but he will likely leave the club in a better position than which he found it.