Liverpool look set for a season without a number 9 in the squad after the departure of Christian Benteke to Crystal Palace today.
The deal has been rumoured all season but the reds have now shook hands on a deal that includes a £27M up front fee with potential add-ons taking the fee past £30M.
An offer earlier this week with a initial £23M fee had been rejected by the reds. Their move for Benteke had become more determined thanks to Everton's £25M purchase of Yannick Bolasie from the Eagles earlier this week.
Benteke, along with Balotelli, did not feature in the managers plans for the season ahead. Divock Origi, Danny Ings, Daniel Sturridge and the attack minded Sadio Mane are deemed a better fit for the current manager's tactics.
Benteke at Liverpool
Benteke arrived at Liverpool just under 13 months ago - brought in by former boss Brendan Rodgers from newly relegated Aston Villa for a fee of £32.5M.
He scored his first goal against Bournemouth at Anfield to give the reds all three points in a 1-0 win.
After Rodgers was sacked, and after recuperation from a minor injury he scored in two consecutive games - including a good away 3-1 win at Chelsea.
On Boxing Day he came back into the side to score the only goal of the game to beat Leicester City at Anfield - Leicester eventually going on to become Champions.
But as injuries lessened he moved further down the pack. He was named Captain for an FA Cup 3rd round tie at Exeter and his performance was derided as he was outshone by several debutants and youngsters named in the side.
His final goal for the reds came in the home game against Chelsea on the 11th May when he scored a late equaliser.
In his only season at Liverpool he did make 42 appearances but 22 of these were from off the bench. He averaged a Liverpool goal every 218 minutes.
Pardew will play to his strengths
Benteke always seemed an unusual buy by Rodgers, almost as unusual as the arrival of Balotelli a year earlier.
The Crystal Palace boss, Alan Pardew, hopes to utilise Benteke differently.
"He's someone I know very, very well because I wanted to take him to Newcastle. I thought he'd be a fantastic fit for that club. He got the move to Liverpool and it hasn't quite worked out.
"For us, we need to get him back to doing what he does best. His style of play, the way he feeds off crosses...
"He'll enjoy that with the wide players we have. But he's not our player yet.
Klopp held firm
Jurgen Klopp had been adamant that the reds wouldn't be bullied into accepting a lower price by other clubs and held firm for what they believe is a reasonable valuation for the player.
And astonishingly, despite the huge increase in money available to Premier League clubs, as it stands Liverpool have made a net transfer profit this summer with just under £70M spent and just over £70M received.
— Crystal Palace F.C. (@CPFC) 20 August 2016
Speaking on the completion of the four year deal, Benteke added:
“I’m very happy to commit my future to Crystal Palace and I’m looking forward to meeting the manager, the players and the staff.
“I feel really happy that the deal has been done and now I can look forward.”
We wish Christian all the best at his new club.