Five Nabil Fekir Alternatives for Jurgen Klopp
Reds fans have suffered a fairly tumultuous start to this summer’s transfer window. First came the Fabinho signing, seemingly out of nowhere, and joyous fans took to Twitter to proclaim their love for Michael Edwards and the rest of the transfer committee. In the coming weeks the Reds were linked with a few big-name players across Europe, none more so than Nabil Fekir of Lyon. After just weeks of the interest becoming public knowledge, Fekir was at Melwood, being interviewed in an LFC shirt and just a medical away from becoming Klopp’s latest signing. We all know what happened next, a knee issue meant Klopp and co tried to renegotiate the deal, and Lyon quickly ended discussions.
If after all that, Klopp misses out on his number one summer target, there are plenty of other options for the Reds
James was deemed surplus to requirements by Zinedine Zidane at the beginning of last season, and Carlo Ancelotti, the man who brought him to the Bernabeu, was quick to step in and give him a lifeline at Bayern Munich. The Columbian enjoyed a decent season in Germany and both Ancelotti and Heynckes got the best out of him as Bayern steamrolled the rest of the Bundesliga. According to SofaScore, Rodriguez had the best average rating of any player in the Bundesliga (7.77), finishing third for assists (11), creating the second most big chances (14) and averaging the most key passes a game (2.8). He certainly represents a creative midfield option for Klopp.
Ziyech has now reached the point in his career where he must leave the Eredivisie, following an impressive stint at Ajax. He impressed at the World Cup for Morocco and is being linked to some of Europe’s biggest sides – the Reds being one of them. Not only does he offer a creative element to midfield, but he is also an extremely capable set-piece taker, something the Reds have missed since Coutinho’s January departure. He fits the mould of a Klopp player, with his ability to win the ball and drive past opposing players into the final third.
He burst onto the scene under Klopp, and was a regular during his Dortmund reign, the creative force in Klopp’s tenacious side. After winning his side the World Cup back in 2014, injuries have plagued the German midfielder, but with the correct tutelage, we could once again see the best of Götze. For a low price, with plenty of appearance-based clauses, it could be a steal. The major issue that he would bring is whether he would be able to stay injury free in such an intense system.
A player Klopp admires, and one the Reds were heavily linked to before his move to PSG. Game time has been hard to come by in a stacked midfield at the Parc des Princes, and Anfield could be the perfect place for him to thrive. Draxler has largely operated as a central midfielder during his time in the French capital, which could tie in well for the Reds, given his history playing as a forward. The former Wolfsburg star finished last season with an average rating of 7.04, managing four goals and five assists while creating 11 big chances with 92% pass accuracy. Those numbers are impressive when you take into account the fact that he only played 30 games, averaging 56 minutes a game.
Another German, this time one who is unlikely to slot straight into the starting XI. Havertz is an extremely versatile player, and can be deployed on either wing, behind the striker, or even as a striker. The German only turned 19 a few weeks ago and created eight goals in his second senior season, and chipped in with three of his own. It’s probably too early for him to be a consistent starter for the Reds, but he would offer a fantastic option from the bench, or as a rotation player.