“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!
I’m not exactly devastated over the results from the Mickey Mouse Community Shield match against Arse n hole. Maybe 2 seasons of actually winning a few respected trophies can do that to a fan. Honestly that opening goal from Aubamayang was just a decent goal. After that Arteta’s men sat back and soaked up our attacks like a dirty sponge.
I enjoyed a quick glimpse of Klopp’s Ultra Attack formation with Mini, Mane, Mo and Bobby operating up front. Taki knicked a goal and we held on to decide the match on Penalty kicks. We got unlucky in the pens. It’s sort of ironic everyone expected Rhian Brewster to come on and be a hero and he ended up losing the game. Knowing Klopp like I do, he will use this as a learning experience for Brewster, something to help propel himself to improve.
Bottom line we had a discouraging preseason last year, we lost the shield in penalties to City, and we went on to win the league and set records. I’m not too worried just yet.
Now for the reason to get worried, arguably the game’s greatest ever player Lionel Messi, might be signing for Liverpool’s closest domestic rivals Manchester City. I hate to distract everyone with non LFC transfer news and I know I will get shit from at least someone, but I had to talk about the Messi Situation so I wrote a detailed separate article Here. Now that the Messi Scandal is out of the way (on a different page) we can focus on the Liverpool football club related transfer news making the headlines. Mane is being linked as Messi’s replacement at Barcelona, Ovie Ejaria completes his transfer to Reading F.C., and much more…
Messi on Merseyside
Incase anyone needed a reality check, I just wanted to state once and for all Liverpool will not be moving for Lionel Messi. Messi’s wages alone are believed to be over $1.5 million per week. Liverpool can’t afford that. Beyond financial capabilities Messi is known to prefer a reunion with Pep Guardiola.
Jurgen Klopp confirmed my opinion on Liverpool making a move for Messi in his press conference before the Community Shield match against Arsenal. Klopp was quick to praise Messi stating any team would be happy to have him but closed the door on a move to Liverpool.
“Yeah, who doesn’t want Messi in their team?! But no chance. The numbers are absolutely not for us. But… good player to be honest!”
Manchester City are currently the favorites to sign Messi and Jurgen Klopp agreed Messi would improve Manchester City and make it more difficult for Liverpool to retain the title but expressed doubt on the move actually taking place.
Mane the new Messiah
So as the stories about Messi leaving Barcelona dominate the headlines, TMW report Liverpool forward Sadio Mane is Barcelona’s number 1 target to replace Lionel Messi if he leaves. One more reason for Liverpool fans to hope Messi stays put. Ronald Koeman previously worked with Mane when he was manager at Southampton and currently considers Mane as one of the world’s most talented attackers.
Mundo Deportivo claim Mane would be open to a move to Barcelona to reunite with Koeman. The report is keen to point out Mane still has a fine relationship with Jurgen Klopp but he is jealous of the attention received by other players on the team like Mo Salah or club captain Jordan Henderson. Mane sees a move to Barcelona as his chance to be recognized as the super star he is.
They also claim Liverpool would accept as low as $143 million pounds which for me kinda trashes the whole story. I don’t care what the financial situation is like at Anfield, Liverpool would never accept less then a club record fee for Sadio Mane. He’s miles ahead of Coutinho even in Coutinho’s prime. Micheal Edwards would expect more for Mane.
Right now with the current unrest and squad issues, leaving Liverpool for Barcelona would be an obvious step down. Mane has repeatedly told news sources he is happy at Liverpool and enjoys playing under Jurgen Klopp. I think with the slow decline of Mo Salah, Mane will truly assert himself as Liverpool’s top attacker this season. Mane has yet to sign a new contract but his current deal expires at the end of the 2022-2023 season.
Ovie and Out
After spending a season and a half on loan, Liverpool youngster Ovie Ejaria joins Championship side Reading F.C. on a permanent deal. It was earlier reported that Reading were having trouble coming up with the cash to sign the promising 22 year old central midfielder. But eventually they were able to pay Liverpool’s demanded price of $4 million.
Ejaria made 55 appearances for Reading while on loan becoming an important player for the mid table team. Half a million in addons and 20% sell on fee were included in the deal.
Ejaria Joined Liverpool’s academy in 2016. He made 8 appearances for Liverpool including 3 FA cup starts.
A Move for Marko
Marko Grujic often feels like Liverpool’s forgotten man. In four years he’s only made 14 appearances for the reds and spent the majority of his Liverpool contract on loan. The past two seasons Grujic was on loan with German side Hertha Berlin. The loan spell was pretty successful with Grujic scoring 9 times in 55 appearances and becoming a fan favorite. Unfortunately due to the financial impact of the Corona virus Hertha were unable to make Grujic’s move permanent and he was sent back to Liverpool to take a place in Liverpool’s preseason squad.
According to the Daily Mail AC Milan and Newly promoted Italian side Benevento are poised to battle it out for Grujic’s signature. Milan are said to be in the market for a central midfielder after losing both Giacomo Bonaventura and Lucas Biglia upon the expiration of their contracts this season.
Benevento are looking for needed reinforcements after winning the Serie B title. Italian news website Tuttomercatoweb claim Benevento are the only club to actually make contact, going as far as already attempting to negotiate with Grujic’s camp. Liverpool are believed to want $33 million for Marko Grujic.
I’d love to see Grujic go to A.C. Milan, I fear there’s a good chance Benevento will be relegated this season and Grujic could end up playing in Serie B when he’s good enough to play top tier football. Just maybe not at Liverpool. I like Grujic’s height and composure on the ball but he doesn’t seem to have the quick reactions and agility to play Klopp’s style of football in my opinion.
The Children are the Future
The Liverpool Echo are reporting Liverpool have tabled a bid for 17 year old Fluminese goalkeeper Marcelo Pitaluga. The Echo believe the deal will most likely be accepted for the Under 17 World cup Champion keeper due to the Brazilian side’s financial setbacks arising from the pandemic. Pitaluga surprisingly has a German passport, which makes any deal easier to complete with restrictions over work permits not an issue.
This could be the latest of Liverpool youth deals flying under the radar after the signing of German youth international Melkamu Frauendorf from Hoffenheim and Polish winger Matuesz Musialowski from SMS Lodz. Both players already tipped for bright futures at the age of 16. Since signing, both players have already impressed, scoring on their debuts while featuring with the Liverpool youth sides.
Klopp revealed in a recent interview that Liverpool would turn to scouting and youth recruitment as a means of avoiding big spending in the transfer window. Liverpool would be targeting the next “Jadon Sancho” and focusing on skilled analytical scouting to find top academy talent before their potential first team break through saving the club multi millions in the process and establishing a foundation for decades to come.
In a past article I discussed Billy Beane, the creator of the money ball tactics Liverpool’s transfer committee have adapted as their own. In the article I examined Beane’s overall positive impression with Liverpool’s recent youth recruitment including the signing of Sepp van den Berg. Liverpool’s focus on shrewd youth signings this summer may point to a greater understanding of the evolution of the money ball tactics created by Beane. Only time will tell if these planted seeds will bear tasty fruit.
I’m Jordan Gerrard and as always I thank you for reading.