Saturday, October 1, 2022

Liverpool Have Reignited Their Interest In This English Defender: What Will He Bring To Anfield?

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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 edition of the Transfer Window Podcast, Ian McGarry claimed that Liverpool have reignited their interest in Brighton and Hove Albion defender Ben White but could face competition from Manchester United in pursuit of the English centre-back. McGarry said (transcripted by HITC),

“We have information here at the Transfer Window, that Manchester United and Liverpool have re-established interest, which they showed first of all in the summer, in Brighton defender Ben White, who has made a very, very impressive start to the season at the south coast club, having, of course, completed last season on loan at Leeds United.”

White’s Impressive Form In The Premier League This Season

The Poole-born defensive ace has enjoyed a solid start to this campaign and has successfully established himself as a regular starter at the centre of Graham Potter’s defence. He has been involved in 12 matches for the Seagulls this term, receiving a total of 1060 minutes of playing time on all fronts.

White has performed at a high level on the defensive end of the field as he is averaging 2.1 tackles, 2.0 interceptions, 1.5 clearances and 0.5 dribbles per 90 minutes in the Premier League this season. The ex-EFL Championship star has also been tidy when distributing possession out from the back as evidenced by his pass completion rate of 81.2% in league football (stats via whoscored).

Liverpool have reignited their interest in Ben White who is seen defending in the photo
Reiss Nelson of Arsenal and Ben White of Leeds United chase down the ball during the FA Cup Third Round match between Arsenal FC and Leeds United at the Emirates Stadium on January 06, 2020, in London, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

What Will The English Centre-Half Bring To Merseyside?

White has demonstrated himself as a capable defender at the back as he possesses good defensive awareness to snuff out the danger when needed. He is a decent tackler of the ball and can make some essential interceptions for his team. The English sensation is also not afraid to put his foot through the ball to clear his lines when the opposition is looking to threaten on the counter. Standing at 1.85m, he can be a towering presence inside his penalty box and can win his fair share of duels with the opposition in the air.

Recruiting White would go a long way in addressing some of Jurgen Klopp’s defensive concerns brought about by the long-term injuries to Virgil Van Dijk and Joe Gomez. Even though the likes of Rhys Williams and Nathaniel Phillips have done well to step in and act as the back-ups to Fabinho and Joel Matip, yet there is no hiding from the fact that Liverpool need to bring in at least another centre-back if they intend to challenge across all competitions in the second half of this campaign.

The Brighton star is good enough to fight for a regular first-team spot at Anfield and would also serve as a great defensive option for Klopp in the long-run. At 23, White will only get better with each season, so the Reds would be wise to engineer a move to lure the talented defender to the north-west of England when the transfer window reopens at the start of next month.

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