Tosin Adarabioyo & The Need for More Bodies

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Tosin Adarabioyo & The Need for More Bodies

As the dust settles on the long awaited (or so it seems) departure of Liverpool’s former captain, Jordan Henderson, the focus moves swiftly onto when his former midfield partner, Fabinho, will also head off to the Saudi Pro League. I imagine that as Fab’s outgoing reaches its finality, a new and vibrant young asset will be brought in, with Southampton’s brilliant Roméo Lavia remaining the most likely of signings. The Reds have already departed for the Singapore leg of their preseason preparations, which means our German manager will want new bodies brought into the squad as soon as possible.

Have The Reds Done Enough to Replenish the Midfield, Beyond the Potential Arrival of Lavia…?

As it stands (and with the assumption that our Brazilian enforcer is indeed sold), one more middle man will be needed to cover the defensive midfield slot, beyond that of the Saints 19-year-old. The names of Manu Koné, Khéphren Thuram, Cheick Doucouré, appear to be the most notable links that are still floating about, with all three holding enough versatility and experience to make fine additions to the LFC squad. I strongly believe that both Jürgen Klopp and Jörg Schmadtke will have focused in on who they needed most, though this recent Saudi invasion has clearly shown that some fast manoeuvring is now underway. Even after this current episode of replenishment, our recruitment team may need to add yet another midfield player, if the majestic Thiago Alcântara were to leave also. Though I am all in on a full central rebuild, I do hope that one area of the team is not neglected in the coming weeks.

How Much Attention Is Needed on The Defensive Recruitment…?

It is very well documented that Liverpool is looking for a strong and effective left sided defender. This would be someone that could operate as both a left back (out of possession) and a LCB in our on ball 3-4-3 system. In recent weeks we have seen Levi Colwill become an interesting potential target, though the cost of that deal (probably £70m) makes it a difficult one to envision. There are plenty of players that could be targeted for that role and I believe it is something we can take to the final days of this transfer window, with varying clubs being played off against one another. What I am not as confident about, is the depth across the entire backline, with only Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konaté standing tall as the elite level central defenders in the squad. In this transitional period, I sense that Andy Robertson will start the season as the left back who shifts inside (when the Reds are on ball), in order to create a working back three. Once the midfield reshuffle is complete, our Sporting Director will no doubt pivot towards finding a more suitable new player (as highlighted above), who will then be gradually eased into the side to eventually replace the Scotland captain. I am very comfortable with that personnel adjustment, yet I am worried we are overlooking the need to upgrade on the right side of the defence.

We know that James Milner is no longer a right back option, Calvin Ramsay, and Sepp van den Berg are now on loan, whereas Trent Alexander Arnold will now be playing much of the game as a playmaker hybrid. In essence, it does still mean that we will still see the rejuvenated England man as a right back that drops in as required, with Joe Gomez offering good coverage in the matches where we maintain a continuing back four. We are all aware of the struggles that have engulfed the former Charlton defender, yet I believe if he were pitted within a strong system (and had Virgil or Ibou next to him), then he could still operate to a good level as the CB alternative and back up right back. My main concern is his squad mate, Joël Matip, who at 31-years-old is showing a sharp regression, not dissimilar to that of the two Saudi bound veterans. My adamance that Gomez can still offer something (as a 26-year-old squad player) does not extend to our popular Cameroonian. I believe the plan will be to have two teams operating during the first half season, given the low overall standard of the Europa League group stage. I have no worries about Our 6ft 2inch England man taking up a role in that team, yet I worry if it were with the 6ft 5inch former Schalke man beside him, that it might bring out the worst form in both players. The perfect scenario would be to have one of the Saudi clubs return to Anfield with a solid offer to take Matip off our hands, so that we could continue our over-the-hill cleanse.

Who Could Be a Viable Replacement for Matip…?

The answer to that question is found below.

Tosin Adarabioyo

Age – 25-years old (DOB 27/09/1997)

Current club – Fulham

Nationality – English

Height – 6ft 5inch

Weight – 80kg

Appearances & goals – 186 goals / 6 assists

Senior minutes played – 15’374

International caps & goals – 0 games / 0 goals

Transfermarkt value – €16m

A move for the former Manchester City academy player is a solid and smart avenue that should be considered. The last couple of days have seen some interest start to emerge for the giant defender’s signature, as you can see below.

That €5m bid will no doubt be rejected, however, a €10m – €15m offer would more than likely be accepted by the west London club. The Cottages will not want to lose this player for free and with just a year remaining on his current deal, that would become a reality beyond this summer window. Last season saw the Manchester born player make 29 appearances for his current employers, within a season where the newly promoted club excelled, before finishing 10th in the Premier League. Our manager recently spoke about how the club needed to make smart decisions in this transfer window, with this type of deal surely alluding to what he was thinking.

If you look at the above analysis, this is a very good example of what our defensive targets usually look like. The age is ideal, the stature, aerial prowess, speed, and homegrown status, are all plus point for a deal that would surely add better depth to our backline options. As I write this, it has been reported that both Monaco and Tottenham are keen to wrap up a deal in the next week, therefore hopefully Jörg Schmadtke will take note and throw his hat into the ring, as acquiring this undervalued player would be a very good piece of business for Liverpool FC.

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