One pundit believes that it is “inevitable” that Liverpool will lose one of their star front three in this summer’s transfer window.
Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah have proved largely unplayable since joining forces in the 2017/18 season.
They scored 91 goals between them that campaign, before helping the Reds to European and Premier League glory.
However, aside from Salah’s recent input, the trio have not escaped a role in Liverpool’s overall slump.
Mane has scored one goal in 11 league games, while Firmino has notched only one in 13 recent outings. Overall, a lack of intensity going forward has cost the club six defeats in a row at Anfield.
What’s more, fresh speculation has arisen about the trio breaking up. Salah fuelled exit alarms in December by admitting disappointment at Jurgen Klopp and cut another frustrated figure after his substitution against Chelsea.
As such, Tony Cascarino has predicted that one of their big trio will leave at the end of the season.
I think that it’s probably inevitable that one of the big players in the front three will go this summer,” he told talkSPORT.
“The problem is that, around Europe, there is not a lot of money to go and spend the sort of sums that Liverpool would want for a Salah, Mane or Firmino.
“It’s going to be a strange period for a number of clubs, including Liverpool, in this next summer window.”
Liverpool’s season has spiralled out of control due to a series of factors.
The decision to stick with three centre-halves after Dejan Lovren’s departure has cost them, although long-term injuries to their three remaining defenders was previously unthinkable.
As such, midfielders Fabinho and Jordan Henderson – who themselves have had injuries – have had to step back. This has disrupted Liverpool’s overall play, including the input of their front three.
Throw in the congested nature of the season and Liverpool’s full-pelt approach for three successive campaigns has caught them up.
But Cascarino insisted that fans must not use Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez’s injuries as the sole excuse.
Liverpool have been worked out – Cascarino
“I don’t have great confidence about the way that Liverpool are playing,” he added. “I think they are getting exposed so often in games.
“Certainly behind their back line, playing a high line, teams are looking to get behind them.
“If all Liverpool fans keep going back to Van Dijk and Gomez… they did play in the 7-2 defeat [to Aston Villa], they did play at Watford when they lost 3-0 at the end of last season.
“There were signs teams were trying to get behind Liverpool. And yeah, they went top of the league and looked fantastic for a period.
“I think there are a number of teams who know they have to do. Chelsea’s line-up stunk of a team, to me, that just went with one objective which was to get behind the backline of Liverpool and expose them and exploit them – and they did it.”
Liverpool return to action on Wednesday to play RB Leipzig in the second leg of their Champions League last 16 tie.