It was an underwhelming end to the transfer window for Liverpool .
Deals for targets Virgil Van Dijk and Thomas Lemar failed to materialise with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain the only new arrival on deadline day.
The Reds couldn’t thrash out a deal with Monaco for attacking midfielder Lemar and Southampton stuck to their summer-long stance that Van Dijk wasn’t for sale.
Missing out on the Dutch defender will undoubtedly frustrate Kopites the most. Van Dijk has spent the past month in exile after telling Saints he wanted to move to Anfield and subsequently submitting a transfer request. Liverpool had to tread carefully after issuing an apology to Southampton and publicly ending their interest back in June when they stood accused of tapping up the centre-back.
The owners were adamant that the Reds couldn’t be seen to be trying to force the issue, but were ready and waiting if Saints had a change of heart and fancied pocketing £70million. They didn’t and Van Dijk stayed put.
Liverpool could hardly complain having adopted the same bullish stance with Philippe Coutinho in the face of Barcelona’s aggressive pursuit. The Spanish window doesn’t shut until Friday night but the Brazilian is going nowhere.
Now that his mysterious back injury has cleared up, Coutinho will return to the fold after the international break having failed in his bid to force a move to the Camp Nou.
Jurgen Klopp ended the summer window with four new signings in Mohamed Salah, Dominic Solanke, Andy Robertson and Oxlade-Chamberlain - five if you count Naby Keita, whose services have been secured from July 2018.
Not including the deal for Keita, the Reds’ total outlay was around £80million - a figure which will be inflated when a tribunal decides on the fee for Solanke.
They generated around £44million from sales and loan fees. Mamadou Sakho sealed a £26million move to Crystal Palace on deadline as he followed Lucas Leiva, Kevin Stewart and Andre Wisdom out the exit door.
Divock Origi (Wolfsburg), Allan Rodrigues de Souza (Apollon Limassol) and Ryan Kent (SC Freiburg) joined Sheyi Ojo, Connor Randall and Pedro Chirivella in departing on loan. The Reds have got the option of recalling Origi in January.
The business Liverpool did get done looks outstanding.
Flying winger Salah has made a blistering start to his Reds career and looks worth every penny of the £36.9million it cost to sign him from Roma.
England Under-21s international striker Solanke has already jumped above Origi in the pecking order and shown why Chelsea were so angry to lose him after his contract expired.
Andy Robertson is a left-back with plenty of potential who treated Anfield to an eye-catching debut against Crystal Palace.
In signing Oxlade-Chamberlain for £35million from Arsenal, Liverpool weakened one top four rival and out-flanked another as the England midfielder snubbed Chelsea.
As for Keita, having reluctantly accepted that Leipzig simply wouldn’t sell the gifted Guinea midfielder this summer, the Reds moved quickly to ensure he will be Anfield-bound next summer. He’s a serious talent.
But concerns remain about whether they have brought in sufficient reinforcements.
Klopp didn’t want to pursue an alternative defensive target to Van Dijk - insisting that if the former Celtic man remained out of reach he would push on with what he’s got.
That looks like a major gamble with Ragnar Klavan and Joe Gomez the only back-up to the first choice centre-back duo of Dejan Lovren and Joel Matip as Liverpool look to compete on four fronts this season. One injury in that department and the squad will really be stretched.
Elsewhere, Liverpool look well equipped for the challenge ahead.
Spirits are currently high after taking seven points out of a possible nine in the Premier League and progressing to the group stage of the Champions League.
And Klopp’s options will be further boosted by the return of Coutinho, Adam Lallana and Nathaniel Clyne. With youngsters Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn flourishing, the squad is undoubtedly stronger.
Attacking wise, Klopp’s Liverpool look breathtaking, but the nagging fear is that defensively they still lack sufficient quality and depth.
Whether they pay the price for failing to address that area this summer, only time will tell.