According to reports, Liverpool’s search for a proper left-back has brought them to La Liga’s latest sensation, Theo Hernandez. The French international has had a brilliant season with Alaves, where he is currently on loan from Atletico Madrid.
His matured displays at just 19 have attracted numerous clubs with Real Madrid being the strongest of the lot. And with Atletico Madrid hell bent on holding on to their prized asset, Liverpool will have a tough job on their hands in his pursuit.
Liverpool have a realistic chance of qualifying for the Champions League next season as the Reds sit at the third position in the Premier League table collecting 63 points from 32 games. And although they have played the most number games among the top six so far, which means their qualification is not entirely in their hands, they also don’t have any bigger fixtures in the remaining six games.
While scoring has been Liverpool’s strongest weapon this season, with Jurgen Klopp’s side netting in 68 goals so far (highest in the Premier League), the Reds have struggled hugely in their defence. They are the highest conceding side among the top six clubs and Klopp’s tactics have under huge criticism owing to it.
The position of the left-back, particularly, has been Liverpool’s biggest concern. With Alberto Moreno proving to be a huge catastrophe in that position, Klopp had to mostly rely on central midfielder James Milner with that role. And while the 31-year-old has been quite assuring with the task, one cannot overlook the fact that Liverpool have no natural left-back in the squad apart from Moreno.
While having Theo Hernandez on the side would be an ideal move for Klopp, getting him is equally difficult. He has been a regular for Alaves this season and has managed four assists in 26 appearances. His acceleration on that left flank is dangerous for opponents, as they find it difficult to mark his overlapping movements.
Not only his pace but his ability to hold the ball in advanced areas and a sharp eye to find incisive through balls as well as ripping crosses are exhilarating to watch. His style of play suits Liverpool’s attacking setup just perfectly and he could well be the missing puzzle in the Reds’ squad.
Atletico Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has rubbished all reports of interests from Liverpool and Real and believes that the player would be ready for a first-team role next season at Vicente Calderon. Hernandez, on the other hand, has reportedly decided his next destination in Santiago Bernabeu with Marca reporting that the La Liga giants are ready to pay the release clause of £20.5 million in Hernandez’s Atletico contract.
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