Liverpool have confirmed the signing of Southampton striker Rickie Lambert, for a fee thought to be around £4 million plus add-ons. The 32-year-old rejoins his boyhood club on the back of some excellent form for Southampton, having scored 28 league goals since helping the Saints to Premier League promotion two years ago.
Lambert, who broke from England's World Cup preparations to complete a medical with the Reds, is quoted on the club's website as saying:
"I can't believe it. I've loved this club all my life. I left here 17 years ago - and I haven't stopped loving it since. I have always dreamt of playing for Liverpool, but I did kind of think the chance of playing for them had gone. I didn't think the chance would come.
"I know how big Liverpool are - and it means everything to me - but I know what is important; I know it's what I do on the pitch and the minutes I play. I know that's what matters, and that's what I'll be focused on."
It's certainly not the sort of signing that will have Liverpool fans rubbing their hands with glee, given that in Luis Suárez and Daniel Sturridge they've already got a couple of far superior, younger strikers on their books.
However, with Iago Aspas failing to impress since his move to Anfield last summer, and Fabio Borini perhaps set for a permanent move to Sunderland after spending this season on loan on Wearside, signing a backup striker makes sense. For a relatively cheap fee, Lambert's signing may prove useful for manager Brendan Rodgers.