Report: Liverpool Scouted £110m Transfer Target at Europa League Final

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Liverpool’s Summer Targets: Scouts in Attendance of Europa League Final

According to a recent report from Graeme Bailey, Liverpool had scouts in attendance to watch Bayer Leverkusen star, Florian Wirtz, as they lost 3-0 to Atalanta in the Europa League final. The report comes as Liverpool prepare to launch into the transfer market ahead of Arne Slot’s first season in charge of the Reds.

Wirtz is a familiar name amongst Liverpool supporters, with speculation rife during the days of current Bayer Leverkusen boss Xabi Alonso making the switch to Liverpool. Although Alonso has committed his future to Bayer Leverkusen, the Reds’ interest in Wirtz still seems to remain.

Why Florian Wirtz?

The 21-year-old has enjoyed a simply world-class season under Alonso at Bayer Leverkusen, racking up 38 goal involvements in 48 appearances across all competitions. That breaks down to 18 goals and a massive 20 assists, which is incredible numbers for an attacking midfielder.

His underlying numbers are just as impressive, averaging a huge 6.51 shot-creating actions and 8.59 progressive passes per 90 minutes. Wirtz’ ability to beat a man is almost as impressive as his creative output, averaging 5.43 progressive carries and 2.73 successful take-ons per 90 minutes, too.

Photo: IMAGO

Tactical Fit

Wirtz would be the dream signing in Arne Slot’s preferred 4-2-3-1 formation, being capable of fitting into any of the three roles behind the central forward, which in Liverpool’s case will likely be Darwin Nunez.

The only potential sticking point is that Wirtz doesn’t actually operate as a central option with two wider players either side of him. He’s in fact used more as a massively inverted winger in Alonso’s 3-4-2-1 formation, similar to what the likes of Eden Hazard and Willian played under Antonio Conte in Chelsea’s Premier League title-winning campaign.

Despite that though, he definitely has all of the traits and attributes to play that central ten role under Slot.

Financial Implications

The hype in Wirtz has been building for a number of years and it’s a shame that Liverpool didn’t jump on that train earlier, with the 21-year-old now valued at £110million according to Transfermarkt. It’s almost impossible to see Liverpool forking out that sort of money under the regime of Michael Edwards. With that being said, it would certainly be a better use of money than Liverpool’s attempted bid for Moises Caicedo last summer.

There is potential for Liverpool to play the waiting game on Wirtz, with his current contract at Bayer Leverkusen set to expire in 2027. With three years left on that deal, his value will only start to decrease steadily from here and at this point next summer and that £110million asking price will likely drop to around £70-80million.

That price may be more reasonable for Liverpool at that point, but competition from the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester City will likely increase too. Ultimately, I see this transfer link being a really difficult one for Liverpool to execute. As good as it would be, I wouldn’t suggest holding your breathe for this one to happen.

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