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Liverpool have been very strong in defence yet again this season. And there are very few words to describe the club’s front three. But how are things looking in midfield? The department is definitely much lighter after the departure of Gini Wijnaldum.
The likes of Thiago, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain have all been plagued by injuries during their time in red. Captain Jordan Henderson has also been on the injury table far too often. James Milner is another to have recently suffered a setback.
That has led Jurgen Klopp to turn to youngsters Harvey Elliott and Curtis Jones. And both have done a phenomenal job when called upon. But Elliott is yet another midfield casualty this season. Jones too has missed action because of a knock.
Trust in youth is key for Klopp. But one just has to take a quick glance at Liverpool’s fellow title challengers Chelsea and Man City to realise how far behind the Reds really are when it comes to squad depth, particularly in midfield.
Incredibly, the Blues boast Mason Mount, Mateo Kovacic, N’Golo Kante, Jorginho, Ross Barkley, Saul Niguez and Ruben Loftus-Cheek to name a few. City meanwhile have Kevin De Bruyne, Rodrigo, Ilkay Gundogan, Phil Foden and Fernandinho among others.
Equally worrying for Liverpool is the future of their Sporting Director Michael Edwards. According to The Athletic, he’ll be gone from the club at the end of the season. Perhaps he has one last trick up his sleeve?
Here are two midfielders that Liverpool could bring in next summer:
A player that shone in Italy’s memorable Euro 2020 success, the Inter Milan youngster has been linked with a move to Anfield over the past few months. Intelligent, composed, skilful. All characteristics that Jurgen Klopp hugely admires. At 24, Barella is a Serie A winner, a European Championship winner, and a Ballon d’Or nominee.
One important factor here is the fact that Inter aren’t in the most stable position. The Serie A club are currently facing one of the most difficult financial periods in their history. Long story short, after lifting the league title last season, such difficulties meant star men Romelu Lukaku and Achraf Hakimi both left. Manager Antonio Conte also departed the club.
But many believe that the exodus is far from over. Midfielder Marcelo Brozovic is a target for a new-look Newcastle. And Lautaro Martinez’ future remains up in the air. Liverpool will be hoping Barella is on that list, and that a move to Anfield is potentially on the cards.
Perhaps one that is more wishful thinking than anything else. And that is for two reasons. Firstly, Borussia Dortmund would undoubtedly ask for an astronomical fee. Secondly, the youngster looks settled in Germany. He is truly thriving, and is constantly wowing team-mates and opposition alike. And this has been confirmed by Dortmund head of first-team Sebastian Kehl, via Fabrizio Romano.
Borussia Dortmund head of first team Sebastian Kehl to @sport1: “There’s lot ot interest around Jude Bellingham, not only Liverpool. But there is no bottom line and no exit clause. He is loved, he enjoys that. There are no signs he could leave BVB soon”. 🟡🏴 #BVB @berger_pj
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) October 27, 2021
But maybe his situation isn’t that different to that of Jadon Sancho. The Manchester United man was also enjoying his time in Germany. And he also had a huge price tag, but United obliged.
Sadly for Sancho, it hasn’t worked out. And that could be something that doesn’t work in favour of Liverpool. Bellingham will certainly be expecting to play week in, week out at Anfield. And perhaps more significantly, the Merseyside outfit are not big spenders. It would mean digging deep into the pocket of the higher powers at the club, and that only happens on the rarest of occasions…