Why Liverpool Should Look to Recruit Federico Redondo
After Monday night’s emphatic and glorious 4-2 win against Newcastle United, it brought a few post-game thoughts to my mind. Though the reds are currently sat top of the Premier League, the final stretch is still not in sight, as the middle part of this long campaign must now be navigated. Certain decisions will have to be made by the Liverpool management group, which could enable ultimate success in the year 2024.
Below are my three standout points after the win which opened a three-point gap at the top of the English top tier.
Style of Play
This squad plays better as an aggressive and relentless pressing machine, built to overwhelm every team in its way. There was a good long period (from last season to recently) where Liverpool 2.0 was looking to become a patient and possession-based team, much in the same way that Manchester City have been engineered under Pep Guardiola. Though many of the key ingredients are there to integrate this style of play, it must only remain as something that can bed reverted to, with a gegenpressing identity being the primary focus of the red’s endeavours.
Jones: The Complete Midfielder
Curtis Jones is now the complete central midfielder, who can press, track, recycle ball, accelerate attacks, or slow down patterns of play and adjust to what is needed. There was once a question mark over the future of the former academy project (not from me, mind), as to whether he could become an integral part of the Liverpool midfield. I now believe that the on-pitch intelligence, energy, technical prowess, and character, make the 22-year-old the first middle man on Jürgen Klopp’s team sheet, which indicates his heightened value to the side.
Wataru Endō has now elevated his game to the level that makes him a very valuable asset. When he arrived from Stuttgart in the summer, he was a deep lying defensive shield, who would not have enjoyed massive amounts of possession in the Bundesliga. Now, half a season into his flourishing Liverpool career, the Japan captain has adapted his game to be a high pressing entity, one that is infinitely more comfortable on the ball. In transition, we are now seeing the 30-year-old occupy smart positions, with a view to either cutting out passing lanes or simply winning the ball back. As the encounter with Newcastle United progressed into the second half, his manager opted for a more elite on ball player for the final stretch, which saw Alexis Mac Allister enter the fray, after his timely return from injury. By this point, the reds were in control of the game state and the need for a specialist defensive midfielder was lessening. The issue is, that with Wataru Endō heading to the Asia Cup (until possibly into February), it restricts Jürgen Klopp’s ability to put that blunt and effective instrument into the middle ground, thereby creating more counter attacking opportunities for the opposition over the next four to six weeks. In the 64th minute of that New Year’s Day matchup, Dominik Szoboszlai left the field with a hamstring injury, which may further reduce the midfield numbers over the coming weeks. Ultimately, the recruitment of a holding midfielder (and a defensive player) would bolster the group in a crucial moment, which must now be looked at in the next week or so.
The next section of this piece will be looking at a young and destructive holding midfielder, who is excelling for Alexis Mac Allister’s former club, Argentinos Juniors. If reports are to be believed, he is now readily available and looking for his move in this January transfer window.
Club – Argentinos Juniors
Nationality – Argentinian
Age – 20-years-old DOB – 18/01/2003
Height – 6ft 2inch
Weight – 75kg
Appearances – 58 games
Goals / Assists – 2 goals / 2 assists
Senior Minutes Played – 3,591
Contract Expiry – December 31 2024
Transfermarkt Value – €9m
Projected Cost of Deal – €9m
Liverpool have been put on 'high alert' after learning that transfer target Federico Redondo could be signed for just £8m this month 🇦🇷
— Rousing The Kop (@RousingTheKop) January 2, 2024
With a contract that is now in its final twelve months, his club, Argentinos Juniors, has taken this moment to try and attract interest from the European market. The transfer window is now wide open and various clubs will be clamouring to spend (and overspend) during the January sales, in line with much of the supporters of their clubs. Federico Redondo is a very aggressive and physical specimen who could be moulded into what Liverpool 2.0 craves, which is a ball winning destroyer that can shield the defence. The name of this player has been mentioned for some months now, therefore, with the possibility of striking a quick deal now being confirmed, I am hopeful that the reds interim Sporting Director, Jorg Schmadtke, will push to get this deal done. It is also important to note that the soon to be 21-year-old is both comfortable and considerate in possession, whilst having his fellow countryman, Alexis Mac Allister, already at the club.
As Wataru Endō heads off for international duty and Dominik Szoboszlai begins his recovery from injury, a smart and very low risk piece of business could be orchestrated for the 7-cap under-20 international. In a period where the Brazilian midfield sensation, Gabriel Moscardo, has just signed for PSG, it confirms the continual rise of South American players, who are now flooding into Europe and excelling. Without the need to register the player as a non-homegrown quantity (given his young age), it would allow an immediate transition into the first team squad. This type of deal would also not stop any summer move for a more senior variant, with Aurélien Tchouaméni, Boubacar Kamara, and perhaps Bruno Guimarães, at the top of that €100m wanted list.
What is clear and imperative, is that some business needs to be carried out in the next four weeks. In Federico Redondo there is a possibility to grab a star of tomorrow. I just hope the club are willing to take that leap of new year’s faith and start exploring the South American market.