The summer isn’t too far away, and with Liverpool in dire need of rebuilding the team, the club could be very active in the transfer market. If the Reds are unable to achieve Champions League football qualification, it is unlikely there will be a lot of money available to sign new players.
The Reds are already in line to lose Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to free agency, while Naby Keita, Roberto Firmino, and James Milner could also depart Anfield. Liverpool’s lack of money for transfers doesn’t mean the team cannot be rebuilt. The club will simply need to be creative to land quality players capable of returning the side to the top four.
Several top players will be out of contract in the summer, including Lionel Messi, Karim Benzema, and Toni Kroos. The Premier League specifically will have some top talent on the market, with clubs able to sign them on free transfers.
After exploring Transfermarkt’s expiring contracts, I made a short list of Premier League players Liverpool should consider signing in the summer transfer market on free contracts. Adding one or more of these players could save the club millions in transfer fees.
(By the time you read this, one or more of the following players may have re-signed with their current club or found a new home.)
Tielemans was previously linked with Liverpool well before his contract neared its end. The midfielder is on his way out of the King Power Stadium and made it known months ago he doesn’t want to sign a new contract.
The Belgian blows hot and cold and lacks long-term consistency. Tielemans doesn’t really fit the mould of Liverpool’s pressing, constantly running team. However, Thiago didn’t fit the Liverpool heavy metal football mould either.
Tielemans is just 25 years old and would provide a little bit of youth in the Liverpool midfield. In 186 matches for Leicester, Tielemans has 28 goals and 25 assists. According to Spotrac, he makes £1.820 million annually.
Ilkay Gundogan could follow James Milner’s lead and leave Man City for free to join Liverpool. Despite Gundogan’s quality, he offers plenty of risk to Liverpool.
For starters, Gundogan is already 32 and would make an ageing central midfield even older. In addition, Gundogan has had his fair share of injuries. Those injuries will likely increase as he gets older.
On a positive note, Klopp is familiar with Gundogan from their time together at Borussia Dortmund. Gundogan is also a proven Premier League winner, and he has the medals to prove it.
There was a time when the football media constantly linked Liverpool with Wolverhampton Wanderers winger Adama Traore. The Reds were said to be on the verge of a big-money move for the Spain international only to sign Traore’s former teammate Diogo Jota.
Traore was previously compared to Mohamed Salah, with the idea that Klopp’s coaching staff could turn him into a world-class forward. Unfortunately for Traore, his brief high-level performances for Wolves didn’t last. Traore lacks the consistency needed to play for one of the big six.
Looking at Traore’s stats for 2022-22 shows a player that offers so much promise but delivers so little. He has one goal and one assist in 20 Premier League fixtures. To be fair to Traore, his xG is only 1.11 this season, and his xA is 2.06, so his chances of scoring or assisting goals have been very low.
Traore’s overall stats at Wolves do not make for great reading. He has just 13 goals and 19 assists in 180 appearances. Sure, he has played for some defensive coaches, but Traore simply hasn’t provided the final touch to chances.
Liverpool’s defence has been abysmal this season. A lot of the blame has been on the midfield, which needs to be refreshed. However, it seems that many fans and football journalists are finally coming around to something I’ve written and spoken about all season, and that is Liverpool’s defence is awful.
It doesn’t matter which combination of players are in the back four. For the most part, the Reds’ defence hasn’t been able to defend all season. Mistakes, poor marking, and bad positioning have cost Liverpool goals. Those aren’t problems created by the midfield, rather those problems are down to Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andrew Robertson, Kostas Tsimikas, Joel Matip, and Ibrahima Konate.
Could the answer be with Leicester City’s Caglar Söyüncü? It could be, but it may not be. Söyüncü is just 26 years old, so he offers some youth compared to Van Dijk and Matip. There doesn’t seem to be a future for Nat Phillips at the club, although he should be given more chances. So, adding Söyüncü to be the fourth or fifth centre-back could add quality depth to the squad.
Gomez continues to be at fault for goals this season. He was awful against Real Madrid in the Champions League last-16 first and was later removed in favour of Matip. Unfortunately, his exit came too late. Gomez is a fine right-back, but when played as a central defender, he struggles.
Brendan Rodgers has only played Söyüncü in two Premier League matches this season. The defender missed three matches due to injury and was left on the bench for 13 other league fixtures. He is out of favour and the reason may come down to his desire to leave the club.
Tottenham Hotspur terminated Matt Doherty’s contract in January allowing him to sign for Atletico Madrid for six months. Doherty is 31, and many Liverpool fans would wonder why the club should consider signing the ageing right-back.
Doherty is a proven Premier League player and professional. He played 302 matches for Wolverhampton, scoring 28 goals and assisting 42. He didn’t have the same impact at Spurs but still appeared in 71 matches, scoring three goals and adding nine assists.
One thing is clear this season at Anfield and that is Calvin Ramsay isn’t up to being the backup right-back. Ramsay hasn’t appeared in the Premier League although he did make one appearance in the Champions League and EFL Cup.
Doherty could provide Liverpool with a veteran right-back. Although he is already on the wrong side of 30. The Irishman hasn’t appeared for Atletico as of the time of writing.
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