Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Update On Liverpool’s Pursuit Of This Bundesliga Centre-Back: Should Klopp Get Him On Board?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent report, SportBILD has provided an update on Liverpool’s pursuit of Schalke 04 defender Ozan Kabak this summer. The same source has mentioned that the German outfit are willing to cash in on their Turkish centre-half so that they can raise funds for incoming transfers which could open the door for the Reds to seal a move for the player during the summer transfer period.

Bild had reported earlier this month that the Merseyside outfit were keeping a keen eye on the Bundesliga youngster and had reached out to Schalke to discuss a potential transfer in this off-season. Therefore, their latest update will be a welcome bit of news for the Liverpool supporters as it seems like there could be a great chance for the newly crowned Premier League champions to land Kabak in the weeks to come.

Kabak’s Impressive Rise In German Football

The talented centre-half has established himself as a consistent performer at VELTINS-Arena after putting in a series of dominant performances at the heart of David Wagner’s backline. He had made 28 appearances for Schalke last season, netting three goals and grabbing one assist on all fronts which showcase his tenacity for getting involved in the decisive end of the field.

The 20-year-old has shown plenty of signs of progress over the past ten months after averaging 1.4 tackles, 1.4 interceptions, 3.6 clearances and 0.8 dribbles per 90 minutes in the Bundesliga. He has hardly given away the ball when distributing it as evidenced by his pass completion rate of 81.5% in league football (stats via whoscored).

Kabak has also played for Turkey at various youth levels but has only secured one senior appearance for his homeland thus far. Maybe a high-profile move to the Premier League this summer could give him a bigger platform to prove his worth and earn more senior caps for Turkey in the coming years.

Update on Liverpool's pursuit of Ozan Kabak who is seen in the picture
Schalke’s Turkish defender Ozan Kabak controls the ball during the German first division Bundesliga football match SC Freiburg v Schalke 04 on June 27, 2020 in Freiburg. – Schalke’s Turkish defender Ozan Kabak controls the ball. (Photo by RALPH ORLOWSKI/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

What Will The Turkish Youngster Add To Jurgen Klopp’s Team?

Kabak has decent pace in his locker and can make a few lung-bursting recovering runs inside his half. He can make full use of his strength to outmuscle the opposition in the air and can even pull off a few vital interceptions and last-ditch clearances at the back for his side. The Turkish whizkid has also managed to prove his value as a capable ball-playing defender which makes him a decent option for Jurgen Klopp to consider ahead of the new season.

Should The Reds Orchestrate A Move For Him This Summer?

Kabak will not only add more stability and variety to the Liverpool backline but also improve the overall quality of Klopp’s match-day squad. At 20, he has his whole career ahead of him, so the Reds would need to be patient with his development if they want to see the best out of him over the next few seasons.

The Turkish centre-half will also provide some healthy competition for Joe Gomez and Joel Matip in the race to earn a permanent starting spot alongside Virgil Van Dijk at Anfield next season. Kabak has primarily been used as a central defender, but can also operate as a defensive midfielder if needed. Therefore, he could even keep Fabinho in his toes and might be able to fill in at the centre of the park during the Brazilian’s absence as well. With all things considered, Klopp should undeniably consider getting Kabak on board before the start of the new campaign.

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