Rickie Lambert
Rickie Lambert's spectacular performances for Southampton paved his way to join his boyhood club, Liverpool.Getty Images

Liverpool legends Jamie Carragher and Steve McManaman have hailed the club's first summer signing Rickie Lambert after the England striker completed his move from Southampton.

The 32-year-old was part of the Reds' youth teams as a teenager but was released in 1997. Brendan Rodgers wanted to sign Lambert to bolster his side's attacking armoury and has signed him for a reported £4m.

Lambert made 41 appearances in all competitions for Southampton last season, scoring 15 goals and contributing 10 assists in the process.

Carragher labelled the former Bristol Rovers striker's move to Anfield as a "very good signing", telling Liverpool's official website.: "He's a local boy, a Liverpool fan, and it's probably been a dream for him.

"There'll be lots of games with Liverpool being involved in the Champions League, so he'll play his part and I'm sure he'll get some goals."

Lambert has been Saints' leading scorer in the last five seasons, and was a vital part of the Hampshire-based club's rise to the Premier League from League One.

McManaman added that if the 32-year-old manages to chip in with consistent displays at Liverpool, it will be a massive bargain for the Merseysiders.

"If he can replicate [his Southampton record] for Liverpool I think they got themselves a really shrewd bargain. As we know football isn't about four-year signings or five-year signings, it's about next year. It's a wonderful opportunity for Rickie," McManaman told the Daily Mirror.

Carragher is hopeful that Lambert and the rest of Liverpool's England contingent will do the club proud at the World Cup in Brazil, which begins on Thursday.

However the 36-year-old, who made 737 appearances for Liverpool, feels that his compatriots will reach the last eight and bow out of the competition.

"I'm eager for them all [Liverpool players] to do well - also Suarez, who is playing against England, so that'll be difficult," Carragher added.

"I think England will qualify from the group and then who knows who they'll get in the draw. It's normally the quarter-finals for England, and I think it'll be the same again."