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'Liverpool Can Still Land Top Players'

Liverpool can still lure top footballers to the club despite failing to qualify for the Champions League again, according to the club’s managing director.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Reds exec Ian Ayre insisted that Liverpool remain confident of landing high-quality signings during the pre-season transfer window, just like they did when signing Daniel Sturridge from Chelsea and Philippe Coutinho from Inter Milan last January.

"We can still attract top players to Liverpool," Ayre said.

"Look at the last transfer window when we brought in Philippe Coutinho and Daniel Sturridge. Both had a huge impact on the team.

"As long as we continue to bring in players of that quality, we'll be heading in the right direction.

"I've never been in negotiations with anyone who has said they don't want to sign for Liverpool because we're not big enough or not successful enough.

"We can still attract top talent. It's about finding the right talent at the right price. The deal has to be right for the club."

The Reds have already secured a deal for Ivorian international defender, Kolo Toure, and Celta Vigo star Iago Aspas is expected for a medical on Merseyside soon.

A host of exciting players continue to be linked to the Reds, and Ayre admits: "It's about getting the right balance."

While the Reds are adamant that their lack of Champions League football will not be the death of their ambitions, as five-times European club champions, they know how sweet the competition can be.

And so without foisting unrealistic expectations on their impressive young manager Brendan Rodgers, the club insists it is still targeting a new era of European success, sooner rather than  later.

"The expectation is keep progressing and of course our ambition is to play in the Champions League," Ayre said.

"This football club is steeped in the tradition of the European Cup. That's where everyone wants to be from the owners down.

"But there is no point saying we expect to finish in this position. All that does is just focus everybody – the world's media – on a particular place.

"We want to be playing in the top flight of European football. That's why fans buy tickets, because they want to see Liverpool at that level. Our ambition is to get there. Whether we do that one year, two years or three, we will see. That's where Liverpool Football Club should be."

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