According to Italian journalist Francesco Veluzzi, Liverpool are ready to battle it out with Serie A clubs for the services of Nicolo Barella this summer. The Cagliari midfielder has attracted attention from a series of top clubs across Europe, following an impressive season that saw him become one of the most sought-after midfielders in Italian football.
Liverpool have already added the likes of Naby Keita, Fabinho and Alisson to their roster this season but would be keen on further strengthening their depth as they attempt to pose a threat for the title next season. For that reason, Barella has been identified as a perfect candidate to bolster their midfield.
In fact, the Reds are currently a bit shallow in their creative department, following the departure of Philippe Coutinho. The Brazilian superstar moved to Barcelona in a big-money move earlier this year, leaving Liverpool dawdling in the market for a viable replacement. And despite boasting the likes of Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane in their revered offensive line, the lack of creativity in central areas could cause problems for Jurgen Klopp’s men next season.
Adam Lallana is currently Liverpool’s best bet to replace Coutinho. But, the England international has struggled with recurring injuries throughout his career, which has stifled his progress at Anfield. In addition, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been ruled out for next season after suffering a cruciate ligament rupture, leaving the Reds devoid of options in the midfield.
As a result, Nicolo Barella appears as an interesting candidate for the Merseyside giants. The Cagliari midfielder has been an omnipresent figure for his side in the last couple of seasons. Last season, in particular, Barella made quite an impression, thanks to his splendid performances which saved the Sardinians from being dragged into a relegation fight.
Although Barella might not be an attacking midfielder as Coutinho, the 21-year-old is a versatile player who is capable of contributing to both offence and defence. His box to box playing style helps him recover balls from the middle of the park, while his tendency to drive through the opposition defence with some marauding runs makes him a unique composition in central midfield.
Simply put, the Cagliari midfielder can emerge as an upgrade to Georginio Wijnaldum, whose future at the club is uncertain following the arrivals of Naby Keita and Fabinho. With the inflated feel of the current transfer market, it would probably not be in Liverpool’s best interest to go after the player, especially given the fact that the Merseyside outfit’s problem areas lie elsewhere.