Liverpool legend Mark Lawrenson believes the Reds' signing of Rickie Lambert shows that Brendan Rodgers has taken charge of the transfer business at Anfield.
The Merseyside club confirmed the signing of the England international from Southampton on Monday as the 32-year-old striker returned to his boyhood club after being released at the age of 15. Lambert's acquisition is against Liverpool's philosophy of signing players above the age of 30.
The former Liverpool defender believes the Northern Irishman convinced the Reds board to deviate from their transfer policy in landing Lambert. Lawrenson says the money spent for the striker's signature can be gained by the sale of Ousamma Assaidi this summer.
"Lambert's signing, at 32 years old, does go against the grain of what we were told Fenway Sports Group insisted happen at Anfield," Lawrenson told the Liverpool Echo.
"They wanted young players with re-sale value potential but this transfer tells us that Rodgers has earned the right, after Liverpool's excellent season, to ask for more experienced players as well."
"Liverpool aren't breaking the bank to sign Lambert, of course, and part of Rodgers' discussions with the owners will be that he can recoup that money from the sale of Ousamma Assaidi, for example."
"But the manager will also have argued that Rickie's acquisition gives his squad much better balance. You would not have thought that Lambert will be one of the first names on the teamsheet but that will mean nothing considering where he has been in his career," he added.
The former Liverpool defender says the former Swansea boss will have no trouble in managing Lambert, while admitting the Reds' first summer signing will have a point to prove at Anfield.
"The strength of Rickie's character is also not in question because of where he has come from and the number of times he has been knocked back and managed to get back up," the Anfield favourite said.
"No doubt he will have a point to prove having been released by Liverpool as a teenager, but Lambert will be no trouble for Rodgers. He will be easy to manage because he will be so grateful of this move back to his boyhood club."
"But most important of all, Lambert is a good player. He holds the ball up well, he is good in the air, good from set-pieces and he works ever so hard," Lawrenson concluded.