Gerrard’s replacement is chosen

News reaches us of an extraordinary development in Liverpool football club’s obsession with all things Southampton.

Following their trio of south coast summer purchases – not to mention their coveting of Luke Shaw and Calum Chambers – the Reds are now actively pursuing Burnley’s Danny Ings, yet another former graduate of the Saints academy.

The Cutter understands this has proven to be the final straw for Liverpool’s owners FSG who have grown tired of Brendan Rodgers looking both doe-eyed and entitled in a southerly direction and with typically unorthodox business acumen have decided to – as our secret insider termed it – “go right for the source”.

This involves the rather extreme step of the Anfield club purchasing outright the Princess Anne University Hospital – that is generally considered to have the best maternity care in the area – with a multi-million pound deal expected to go through in the weeks ahead.

Our insider told us, “With the whole privatisation of the NHS farrago going on we’re anticipating a shit-storm of controversy for doing this but we were left with little choice. Brendan’s infatuation for any player who learnt their trade in Hampshire is costing us a fortune in transfer fees and wages so it makes sense to go right for the source. As of early 2016 any baby born in the Princess Anne maternity ward – that we plan to rename the ‘Stevie G Dare To Dream General’ at the earliest opportunity – belongs to us. Should they show any aptitude with activity balls or fall over a lot when they’re learning to walk they will eventually be relocated to Melwood which we’re transforming into a giant crèche. Let’s face it, it’s all that place is good for anyway”.

The Cutter also understands that this bizarre investment is partly being funded to put a stop to Rodgers’ errant use of scout’s resources.

“I’m surprised you guys haven’t caught wind of this earlier. Some time back Brendan instructed every scout even vaguely connected to the club to leave their Scandinavian homes and concentrate all their attention on ‘Project Saints’. This entailed hundreds of talent-spotters traipsing up and down Southampton high street looking for anything remotely promising. We even heard a tale of a heavily pregnant woman in a local Spar who remarked out loud that her baby was kicking a lot of late. She was duly given a card and a DVD of Rome ‘77”.