Jurgen Klopp is preparing for a huge summer window to aid a title push with the club set to prioritise a move for Roma goalkeeper Alisson, Napoli holding midfielder Jorginho, as well as a ‘Coutinho replacement’ in the summer – according to Paul Joyce (Times).
Last summer was all about adding depth, but Klopp is ready to make the final adjustments to his side this summer in an effort to make them genuine title contenders.
Backed by FSG and the sale of Philippe Coutinho, these could be the final three key pieces to the puzzle.
Firstly, the addition of a world-class goalkeeper such as Alisson could win Liverpool games alone – as shown by the exploits of Manchester United’s David De Gea this season. The Brazilian shot-stopper rivals Gianluigi Buffon as one of the best keepers in Serie A and also holds down the No.1 spot for his national team ahead of Manchester City’s Ederson.
While reports emerged that Liverpool had ended their interest in Alisson, this was in the same vein as the Van Dijk apology with the club keen to keep the move under wraps. Liverpool are prepared to shell out big money to land Alisson – with rumours of a £70m price tag circulating.
Next on the wish list is Napoli midfielder Jorginho – who many suspect to be the future of Italy’s midfield. Playing as a holding midfielder, comparisons to Andrea Pirlo were drawn up when he burst onto the scene in the 2011/12 season with Hellas Verona. Earning himself a move to Napoli in January of 2014, Jorginho is now one of the first names on the teamsheet for the Gli Azzurri.
Maurizio Sarri has deployed Jorginho in a regista role since taking the reigns almost three seasons ago, the Italian conducts the play from deep within midfield using his vision and composure. Sarri deploys a ruthless pressing system, similar to Jurgen Klopp, this philosophy is arguably the main reason Napoli top the table so far this season.
It was reported that an unknown “big English club” proposed a significant offer for Jorginho ahead of the January transfer window. However, the Italian decided to stay at Napoli until the summer at least given their chances of ending a 27-year Scudetto drought. Given his current side’s style of play and unquestionable talent, Jorginho would slot seamlessly into this current Liverpool side.
Replacing Coutinho remains the hardest problem to solve for Liverpool – there aren’t many playmakers in the world that are on his level. While the arrival of Naby Keita this summer seems like a natural successor, the midfielder cannot break the lines like the Brazilian. Thriving in box-to-box play, Keita is better at recovering the ball, pressing and driving forward – which could in fact line him up to replace Emre Can.
Names such as Thomas Lemar, Riyad Mahrez and Manuel Lanzini continue to pop up and these avenues will certainly be explored in the coming months. Repairing the damage left by Coutinho’s exit could be what Liverpool’s title hopes hinge on next season given the additions of the aforementioned Serie A stars.
Ultimately, this summer will see Jurgen Klopp focus on quality over quantity in the final push for a long-awaited Premier League title.