It’s no secret that the foundation of Liverpool’s recent success has been their excellent transfer business. Prior to the capture of Virgil Van Dijk for a world record transfer fee for a defender and the following summer spending spree which saw four new faces walk through the Shankly gates, Michael Edwards and co conducted much savvier business via calculated risks including the now irreplaceable Mo Salah.
The Egyptian king’s value has skyrocketed to such an extent since his arrival at Anfield, that a recent report from TuttoSport indicated that Juventus were preparing a bid of €50,000,00 + Paulo Dybala in exchange for his services.
The Reds have also made a habit of pillaging talent from teams relegated from the Premier League with astonishing success. Xheridan Shaqiri was signed from Stoke at a cut price of £13,000,000 and has since shown his worth scoring two goals in Liverpool’s win over Manchester United in December establishing a mammoth 19-point gap over the Red Devils.
Andy Robertson, following his £8,000,000 move from Hull city, has since gone on to be the finest Left back in the league and possibly the world, pitching in on the attacking end of proceedings with 11 assists in the Premier League since the beginning of last season. No defender has been as prolific in that regard since. Not to mention his unbelievable engine and tenacity in the press.
Georginio Wijnaldum’s rise to prominence in the squad comes as a surprise to most, except for perhaps Jurgen Klopp. Signed from Newcastle in the summer of 2016 for £25,000,000 – a seemingly hefty fee, pre transfer market inflation – the dutchman has shown how valuable he is to the side after a man of the match performance against Bournemouth following two deflating draws to Leicester and West Ham, which resulted in the first points to be dropped by the Reds against teams outside of the ‘Big Six’.
Looking forward to the summer ahead and the impending attempts to further strengthen the squad, the following transfer targets from relegation candidates look to be promising.
The fleet-footed forward would not immediately force his way into the starting line-up, which is not necessarily a knock on the teenager as that is a very exclusive club. Liverpool has been very fortunate over the past two campaigns regarding injuries to the forwards, with Sadio Mane the only member of the triumvirate to miss a noticeable number of matches. Reinforcements up top will certainly be on the agenda.
The young Englishman has so far been unable to replicate the form which resulted in the outstanding output of 16 goals and 8 assists in the Championship last season, which was to be expected due to the vast gap in quality between the two leagues, mustering a respectable 2 goals and 5 assists in 23 appearances for the Cottagers in the league. Rotation will be key next season with the vision to build a squad which can compete on three and possibly four fronts. Sessegnon could be the next bargain from the basement.
Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa
One of Manchester City’s vulnerabilities this season has been their utter reliance on Fernandinho’s fitness. The Citiyzens simply do not possess another player who is able to produce the Brazilians output on both ends of the field. Learning from this, the Reds could look to provide cover for Fabinho in the form of the former Marseille man.
Energetic and hard in the tackle, Anguissa notched an impressive combined 4 tackles and interceptions per game in Ligue un last season whilst also chipping in with 1.8 key passes per game, statistics which outstrips the Brazilians current output. Playing for an agonisingly porous Fulham side, new surroundings could allow for a new lease of life for the midfielder. Still only 23 years of age, the Cameroonian would be another signing to future proof the squad.
Southampton’s midfield includes players which have formerly played for Chelsea and Juventus. However, no one stands more so than former Bayern Munich midfielder Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg. Ralph Hassenhuttl name the Dane as captain upon his arrival to the south coast, as he leads the push to maintain top-flight status.
Tidy on the ball, with a keen eye for a pass, Hojbjerg, like the other candidates listed, does not move the needle enough to warrant a starting berth in Liverpool’s first choice midfield, which going forward looks to be set as Fabinho, Naby Keita and Wijnaldum. Still yet to hit his prime at 23 years of age, with top-flight experience in Germany and England, Klopp could find yet another gem amongst the relegation scrap.