Jurgen Klopp decided not to spend on his first team after he allowed his side’s talisman Philippe Coutinho leave the club last month. The German tactician is ready to wait until the end of the season to land his top transfer targets and one such target, who has given them a huge boost is AS Monaco star Thomas Lemar.
The likes of Arsenal and Liverpool have been tracking him from the start of the summer transfer window but Monaco have been able to keep him at the club, even as it looked like they would sell him for around £90m, on more than one occasion.
It was revealed late in January that Klopp does not value the 22-year old at £90m, which saw him avoid signing him in the winter transfer window. However, with Lemar now rejected a new deal in France, Liverpool are once again expected to circle around Stade Louis II for their top transfer target. But is Lemar really worth all this fuss?
A pacey winger, who can also play through the middle, and in a slightly withdrawn role, Lemar is a versatile player, with gifted technique and a great understanding of the game. He is a genuine winger, who can beat his man to the by-line and produce crosses constantly but what makes him special is his ability to sit back and dictate play, creating chances with short passes and quick movement around the box.
He is strong in hold up play and is quick to make interceptions, which allow his side to set off on attacks and his finishing abilities only make him that much more attractive.
He picked up nine goals and 10 assists in 28 starts in the previous season, helping Monaco to the Ligue 1 title but has not been at his best this season, making just 15 starts and picking up just two goals and five assists.
He already has 8 appearances for the French national side and is a crucial member of the squad that will travel to Russia later this year. His performance in the World Cup might determine his price in the summer but with the news of this contract rejection, Liverpool might want to get a deal done as soon as the season comes to an end.
He is touted as the replacement for Coutinho and at just 22, has enough potential to replace the Brazilian in the long term. He will certainly fit in well under Klopp’s system, and if Klopp can play to his strengths, Lemar even has potential to eclipse the Barcelona man.
But do you think he is worth the £90m that Monaco might still hold out for in the summer?
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