Friday, January 27, 2023

Klopp Special: Why Liverpool Finally Has To Sign This Long Term Midfield Target

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Sourav Bhakat
An ardent sports lover who loves to sleep, eat and watch Manchester City play. In that order.

Liverpool started off the season in an emphatic manner winning 4-3 against Arsenal and it was truly a sign of what was to come. They have been in swashbuckling form in front of goal this season and are rightfully the highest scorers in the English Premier League. But along with that, as seen in the first game, they have been extremely leaky at the back and it is something which wasn’t paid much attention to initially with Liverpool outscoring teams but the loss against Bournemouth and the most recent loss against Swansea City perfectly illustrates the perils which come with too much focus on attack.

While Matip and Klavan have come in, the duo has not settled as expected and Liverpool have been quite embarrassing at times at the back. But just the central defenders can’t be blamed for the poor record and the manner of some of the defeats. A part of the blame would fall on the manager while the players sitting in front of the defence will also have to shoulder the responsibility. And speaking of irresponsible midfielders, Emre Can qualifies as one this season. He has not built on his displays from last season and has been quite abject at times and it is no wonder he is being linked with a move away from the club.

Emre Can has been deplorable in some matches and has been extremely uncharacteristic with his approach. He has had extreme difficulty in finding his nearest teammates and his defensive contribution has taken a hit and his offensive approach play has failed to add much value. There was hope that he could be the long-term solution in the midfield and with Henderson alongside him, there was a real belief in his future at the club.

But this season’s displays have put all that into disarray which brings us to the actual long-term solution in Liverpool’s midfield. Mahmoud Dahoud.

Borussia Moenchengladbach v VfL Wolfsburg - Bundesliga

Every Premier League club has a staple transfer target that they are linked with during every transfer window and the Borussia Monchengladbach midfield enforcer is Liverpool’s’.

The box to box midfielder is an able dribbler and his penchant for wandering into the opposition box has enabled him to notch up 8 assists and 5 goals last year. He boasts of being the only player to have attempted more than 30 dribbles in the Bundesliga last season and also impressively had a higher success rate (60%) than Manchester United’s big money signing Henrikh Mkhitaryan (59.7%).

In a league dominated by the likes of Robben and Ribery, this indeed is an eye-watering statistic. And even though he has scored only 1 domestic goal till now, his penchant of tormenting opposition defence from the deep-lying areas in well and truly intact.

Jurgen Klopp has been an open admirer of the 21-year old and the player is seemingly a Klopp special. Having youth on his side, the boy is willing to work hard and can solve Liverpool’s current midfield malaise. Klopp knows him well from his experience in Germany and recognises the talents of the lad and the value he can offer to the Reds.

With Liverpool’s policy of getting in young players suiting this transfer perfectly and also due to the fact that he has got only 18 months remaining on his current contract, Gladbach might have to cash in on their star.

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