Liverpool's summer break this year has been very exciting for fans like me.
After emerging thriumphant in the Champions' League final against AC Milan, players around the world are keen to join Liverpool whenever the club expresses some interest. This is a good sign for LFC after so many years lingering as the 'sleeping giant'. To be really honest, for as long as I have supported Liverpool, there is only 1 trophy left I have yet to witness at Anfield; the domestic title. FA Cup, League Cup, UEFA Cup, Charity Shield, European Super Cup, Champions' League, all in the space of 4 years. Not trying to boast but that's a pretty remarkable feat, I don't quite believe it myself. But nothing is more important than being the league champions, and I believe this will be the mentality instilled in the players for the coming season.
We saw several players departing Liverpool in recent weeks, cult heroes Igor Biscan and Vladimir Smicer both went to foreign clubs. Others who left are Chris Kirkland (loan deal to West Brom) El-Hadji Diouf, Mauricio Pellegrino, Bruno Cheyrou, Alou Diarra, Richie Partridge (exciting young player), and a few reserve team players.
Some players signed new contracts which will tie them up for a few more seasons, the most recent ones being Jamie Carragher and skipper Steven Gerrard. Prior to this Didi Hamann and Djimi Traore penned new deals too.
Some young players look set to be featured more often in this coming season. We saw Stephen Warnock coming through the ranks last season and did a good job. John Welsh, Darren Potter and Zak Whitbread are speculated to be more involved this season.
Then there are these new faces in the squad. Jose Reina, Boudewijn Zenden, Mohamed Sissoko, Mark Gonzalez (1 year loan deal), and Antonio Barragan. Luis Figo is pleading Real Madrid to terminate his contract so he could join Liverpool, and Benitez is still keen on Peter Crouch (personally, I think £6.5m is a big joke). Also, previously it was reported that Liverpool are chasing young Lincoln City defender Jack Hobbs.
If you ask me, I would love to see a top striker and defender signing before the season begins. Pablo Aimar and Matthew Upson are exciting links, but I am no expert in this. Besides, I'm sure Benitez has some names in his wishlist.
4-3 for Liverpool against Wrexham with both Morientes and Baros scoring a brace. I can't wait for the season to start.