Liverpool Eyeing Up La Liga Forward’s £42m Release Clause

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Liverpool’s Summer Transfer Plans: La Liga Wonderkid Subject to Interest

As Jurgen Klopp’s farewell campaign nears its end, speculation surrounding Liverpool’s future is more present than ever. Whilst there is still plenty to play for this season, with the Reds still in pursuit of the Premier League title, more reports regarding Richard Hughes and Michael Edwards’ plans for the summer transfer window are coming to the forefront of discussion.

One name that has been linked regularly is Athletic Bilbao winger, Nico Williams, who has a £42million release clause that is drawing attention from a number of elite European clubs.

Who is Nico Williams?

Nico Williams is a 21-year-old winger, currently playing for Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish top division, La Liga. The winger has enjoyed a breakthrough couple of seasons for the Spanish outfit, already racking up 115 senior appearances for the club.

Photo: IMAGO

Across those games, Williams has managed 18 goals and 21 assists and has cemented himself as a regular fixture within Bilbao’s first-team plans. So far this season, Williams has made 30 appearances across all competitions and has managed six goals and 14 assists. That’s 20 direct goal involvements in 30 games, which isn’t a bad return at all for a 21-year-old.

His impressive club form has also earned him numerous call-ups to the Spanish national team, where has made 17 senior appearances already and have scored two goals.

Liverpool’s Financial Access

Although Bilbao will undoubtedly be reluctant to let one of their prized assets leave, Liverpool could have a financial in-road in their pursuit of Williams. The youngster reportedly has a release clause of just £42million, which is well within the usual price range of Michael Edwards’ previous signings for Liverpool.

That price tag would become even more affordable should Mohamed Salah decide to leave the club this summer. With Saudi clubs circling once again, a transfer fee of around £150m would likely come in for the Egyptian King.

Salah’s Heir to the Throne

The Reds would likely target someone of Williams’ profile as a long-term or potentially even a short-term replacement for Salah. With the Egyptian King’s historic spell at Liverpool set to come to an end either this summer or next, these sort of contingency plans certainly need putting into place.

Someone with the high potential ceiling like Williams, would make a lot of sense for Liverpool’s future plans. However, many of you will be asking, would Williams be the right fit to replace Salah?

Crunching the Numbers

Williams definitely fits the fast-paced nature of Liverpool’s usual tactical style, ranking incredibly high for his amount of progressive carries and successful take-ons per 90.

The amount of touches in the opposition penalty area and shot-creating actions that Williams averages per 90 minutes is also a massive indicator of his attacking prowess, that is obviously so crucial to Liverpool’s attacking play.

Although his passing numbers don’t look impressive on the radar above, his massive haul of 14 assists this season suggest otherwise. The only slight issue with Williams’ current game, is whether he could match Liverpool’s high-press but even that is slowly fading out of the Reds’ recent strategies.

Nico Williams: Yes or No?

For just £42million, this could be an incredible piece of business by the Reds for both success on the pitch and in terms of potential for financial profit. If we knew that Salah would be here for another few years, then this would be a perfect move for Liverpool. It would give plenty of time for Williams to adapt to the Liverpool culture, whilst also maintaining the high levels of success in that department of the pitch.

The only argument that I could see against the signing of Williams would be the proposition of signing a more proven player, with the likes of Johan Bakayoko, Rodrygo and Florian Wirtz all linked with a move to Anfield, too.

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