“The name’s Gerrard, Jordan Gerrard,” also known as “The American Gerrard!” You know about the “Welsh Pirlo”, you’ve seen the “Egyptian Messi”, but you never knew about the American Gerrard! When the American Scouser needed a transfer expert I was there to smash it in from long range with an absolute belter. What a hit son, what a hit!
We’ve been lucky enough to have two Liverpool matches since my last article (although one of those matches is a match I will hope to soon forget). With the title wrapped up neatly the week before, Liverpool’s match against Manchester City was merely for pride and to increase the chances of setting potential records.
Most football fans expected to see the match of the season – and for many City fans it probably was. The boys in Red had had plenty of time to rest with a weekend of no action. Klopp played his favored 11, and Lovren was nowhere to be seen (or blamed). And then… we were just crap. As soon as the match was over “Liverpool transfer rumors” was trending all over the internet. This highlights the fact that the majority of fans think LFC need to spend money in the summer transfer window. I tend to agree – as much as I love all of the Liverpool players, our bench looks nowhere as good as our closest rivals Manchester City. Do we need to bring in reinforcements to continue to keep Pep Luther and the Legion of Blue 20 points behind?
Klopp Likes Thiago
Thiago Alcantara joining Liverpool football club seems to be the rumor that will not go away. Last week we discussed recent unfounded rumors that Thiago was interested in a move to Liverpool. He has refused to sign a contract extension with current side Bayern Munich and has signaled his intent to find a new challenge.
The Spanish source Sport is reporting negotiations between Liverpool and Bayern are advanced, and the deal could be finalized soon with LFC and Thiago already agreeing to personal terms. The fee is believed to be €30 million with €5 million in bonuses. Lately this rumor has picked up steam, but anyone with real transfer insight knows these rumors have no real reliable source which makes them questionable, even if Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has been a known admirer of the player in the past. After Liverpool’s home victory against relegation candidate Aston Villa, Jurgen Klopp was asked about Liverpool’s interest in Thiago. He was quoted as saying:
“Would you be surprised if I don’t give an answer on that, just because I never answer these kind of questions?” “Thiago Alcantara is a really good player. Like a lot of other players out there, I like [him] a lot. But that’s all I have to say about that.”
Does Klopp’s coy response change my stance on this transfer? I still do not see this happening mainly based on Thiago’s injury record. In the past Liverpool have pulled out of transfers for players like Loic Remy and Nabil Fekir based on concerns over the players’ injury records.
I am not saying Thiago would not be a decent signing if he could stay fit. He creates a lot of chances from a deeper lying midfield role and could be exactly what Liverpool need when teams mark the Reds’ attacking fullbacks out of the game. Thiago excels at winning the ball back in one-on-one situations and quickly starts counter attacks with clever long balls. I think the emergence of players like Curtis Jones could keep this one from happening. Investing in youth could be a cheaper option to someone like Thiago whose wage demands are around €200,000/week.
Weston On the Watch list
Another Midfielder linked with Liverpool this week is American wunderkid Weston Mckennie. 90Min has the exclusive report stating Liverpool sent their scouts to Schalke to watch the US International midfielder. The report claims Jurgen Klopp has instructed the scouting team to focus on finding long-term successors to aging midfielders Jordan Henderson, Gini Wijnaldum, and James Milner.
I do not see this rumor being true or anything to get excited for just yet. Liverpool already have a wealth of younger midfielders like Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Curtis Jones. Mckennie’s style of play is very similar to Marko Grujic, a player believed to be on Liverpool’s sale list. As an American Scouser I must admit, I would love to see LFC sign an American player but I just do not see this happening right now.
Players like Xherdan Shaqiri and Harry Wilson might yet be set to stay at Liverpool this summer. Recent reports claim FSG may be tempted to keep hold of potential outgoings out of fear they may not get bids matching the players’ full valuation. Liverpool are prepared to play hardball over their player prices despite many clubs in Europe being financially impacted by the pandemic. Question marks still remain over the buying power of even Europe’s top teams. If no reasonable bids present themselves, Liverpool may have to settle for loaning out some of their wantaway players to ensure regular action.
Kai’s Teammate Talks
According to his Bayern Leverkusen teammate Wendell, Kai Havertz prefers a move to the Premier League. Wendell believes Havertz has what it takes to be a success playing in England tipping him to join one of the Premier League’s top sides. The highly-rated young talent has been linked with sides like Liverpool and Chelsea. Chelsea were believed to be the front runners for Havertz’s signature. So far Roman Abramovich has funded a squad overhaul with the signings of Timo Werner and Hakim Ziyech. Let’s just hope it stops there (Ed . – both to prevent Chelsea strengthening & keep Havertz’s future with Liverpool a possibility).
Ben’s Been Watched
With the likely departure of Dejan Lovren looming, Liverpool have been linked with many defensive targets. One name making the rounds is Leeds United loanee Ben White. White has easily been one of the best defenders in the Championship this season, and he has been instrumental in Leeds’ push for promotion.
White is known for his technical ability and skills driving forward with the ball. Back in February Liverpool scouts were spotted watching the 22 year-old. Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards is believed to be a fan of the player with his whole transfer team impressed by the English center back’s form for Leeds United.
White is actually on loan from Brighton, who have expressed no interest in selling their young star. On top of that, many scouts have cited a few flaws to White’s game – namely a six-foot stature being too small and a poor record in aerial duels. White may be more interested in playing at Brighton or a potential permanent move to Leeds where he has more chance of playing regular first team football.
We Need N’Dicka
Last month Liverpool were reported to have interest in Frankfurt’s french star Evan N’Dicka. N’Dicka might be a name that’s flown under a few Reds’ radars, but he may just be the missing piece to Jurgen Klopp’s Premier League puzzle. Primarily a center back, N’Dicka has been shifted to left back most of this season due to injuries within the Frankfurt squad and has excelled at the role. N’Dicka stands 6’4 and can play numerous positions (at which Liverpool just so happen to need back up). At 20 years of age, he has lots of potential. N’Dicka’s value is believed to be around 35 million pounds. Even though N’Dicka sounds like a good fit, this story seems to have gone cold with no new info indicating a move (possibly due to financial reasons).
When does the Transfer Window Open?
Typically the European Transfer Window opens July 1 after the termination of each season. With several leagues’ seasons postponed, many fans were left to wonder when the transfer window would official open. The official date has yet to be confirmed for the Premier League but chief executive Richard Masters has revealed the transfer window will not open before the end of the season. The rescheduled 2019/20 season is due to complete on July 26. The earliest the window can open would be the following day July 27. Masters added that there is currently no deadline for a decision on the matter. ESPN sources are claiming the transfer window will begin August 4 and run until October 4th. Some teams have already started negotiating deals before the end of the season but their summer signings will be unable to play until next season. I would expect more concrete information on the transfer window in the coming weeks.
I’m Jordan Gerrard and as always, I thank you for reading.