The Unexpected Deal: Dominik Szoboszlai’s Arrival at Anfield
Literally no one saw this deal happening, given the circumstances surrounding our owners’ supposed willingness to sell the club. In addition to this, there was a hefty buyout clause in the players’ contract, which needed to be met prior to any official negotiations.
As an attacking midfielder that does not turn 23-years-old until October 25th, Dom is a tantalizing recruit that has immediately exploded onto the Anfield scene. Standing at an intimidating and powerful 6ft 1inch tall, the Hungarian captain can travel at high speeds (with ball at feet), whilst certain parts of the Reds 3-1 win against Bournemouth (last Saturday), had me reminiscing of our last great number 8, Steven Gerrard. To have a destructive presence in our central area was a sight to behold, with only the tip of the iceberg be unveiled.
From Austria to Liverpool: Tracing Dom’s Footsteps
After starting out as a young trainee for FC Liefering in the Austrian league (from 2017), it did not take long for the RB scouting network to sign him for their Salzburg team just a year later. By 2021, his name was becoming a frequent topic for discussion between football fanatics, due to his mesmerizing skill set.
The RB Empire: A Breeding Ground for Talent
Red Bull Salzburg's top 10 sales:
🇺🇸Brenden Aaronson ➡️ Leeds €32.84M€
🇩🇪Karim Adeyemi ➡️ BVB 30M€
🇿🇲Patson Daka ➡️ Leicester 30M€
🇬🇳Naby Keïta ➡️ Leipzig 29.75M€
🇸🇮Benjamin Šeško ➡️ Leipzig 24M€
🇿🇲Enock Mwepu ➡️ Brighton 23M€
🇸🇳Sadio Mané ➡️ Southampton 23M€… pic.twitter.com/uKiPRXO3jG
— Football Talent Scout – Jacek Kulig (@FTalentScout) March 27, 2023
It seemed only a matter of time before the Hungarian international would make that next huge leap, as a raft of major clubs kept a keen eye on his development. Both RB Leipzig and RB Salzburg are renowned for their immense scouting departments and ability to attract emerging assets. They do this in the knowledge that eventually those upper tier talents will move on to bigger and more lucrative things. Some clubs always try to hold onto their best players for too long, whilst pinning extortionate price tags on their heads. The clubs within the RB empire consist of the two already mentioned, as well as New York Red Bulls, Red Bull Bragantino, and Red Bull Brasil. The European arm of their footballing federation is where the most transactional success has transpired.
Notable Moves & Missed Opportunities
Many people were left devastated by the Jude Bellingham saga, after the economic aspects of that deal priced the Reds out of a potential move. The long list of alternative names started to filter into the gossip pages soon thereafter, which appears to be never ending. The name of Dominik Szoboszlai was rarely mentioned, certainly with any great conviction, as he was deemed one of the unlikely targets.
The Big Reveal: Dom’s £100M Price Tag
It was the morning of June 30th where the first reports started to filter, which indicated that Jörg Schmadtke was indeed monitoring the Leipzig star. That very date was when his £60m release clause was due to expire, immediately taking him into the £100m price range. It does seem that our intention was to wait until the last minute, in order to avert any competition. This piece of business was both exciting and joyful, however, the young man’s early impact as a Red has been even more so.
Comparisons & Predictions: The Future of Reds
The opening game of the season saw Kevin De Bruyne sustain an injury that has since prompted Manchester City into signing Jérémy Doku. I have little doubt that if Dominik Szoboszlai were still operating in the Bundesliga, that Pep Guardiola would be demanding they pay the new £100m asking price for him. As well as giving a superb Steven Gerrard impression, it is notable to add the similarities the 22-year-old holds in De Bruyne’s game. One of the key points to City’s continued dominance (apart from the sports washing), is having a brilliant controller, a superb holding destroyer, and that sensational match-winning attacking midfielder. If Jürgen Klopp is successful in bringing in a vicious defensive midfielder to add that to the control of Mac Allister, and devastation of Dom, I could see an era of brilliance incoming.
— 𝗦𝘇𝗼𝗯𝗼𝘀𝘇𝗹𝗮𝗶 𝗭𝗼𝗻𝗲 (@_Szoboszlai) August 21, 2023
Upcoming Clash: Reds vs. Magpies
The Reds travel to St James Park this Sunday, as the teams look set to battle through the campaign for one of the Premier League’s top four spots. The Magpies were heavily linked with a move for the 32-cap international, which would have seen him line up next to the superb Bruno Guimarães. That now becomes a must-see encounter, with the two instead coming head-to-head for their respective sides. Dominik Szoboszlai was the outstanding performer last weekend; therefore, I cannot wait to see what comes next.