Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Liverpool To Rival AC Milan For This Talented Defender: Good Choice For Klopp?

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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, Sky Italia claimed that Liverpool are set to rival AC Milan for Malick Thiaw. It is understood that the Reds are prepared to lock horns with the Italian outfit in pursuit of the German centre-back.

Thiaw’s Impressive Season In German Football

Thiaw is having a solid campaign in the 2. Bundesliga after producing a run of dominant displays at the centre of Schalke’s backline. The 20-year-old has made 21 appearances for the German club this season but has failed to register a goal.

The Dusseldorf-born powerhouse deserves a lot of credit for averaging 3.0 tackles, 1.6 interceptions, 3.4 clearances and 0.9 shots per game in the 2. Bundesliga. He has even been accurate when distributing possession from the back based on his pass completion rate of 82.7% in the second tier of German football (stats via whoscored).

Liverpool (Malick Thiaw)
BREMEN, GERMANY – NOVEMBER 20: Malick Thiaw of Schalke in action during the Second Bundesliga match between SV Werder Bremen and FC Schalke 04 at Wohninvest Weserstadion on November 20, 2021 in Bremen, Germany. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
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Is Thiaw A Good Choice For Liverpool?

Thiaw can use his strong 1.91m frame to dominate the opposition attackers in the air and can clear his lines when needed on the defensive end of the field. The German youngster is a solid tackler of the ball and can sense the danger quickly to earn the ball back for his team. He is even proficient at playing his way out from the back and can fill in as a defensive midfielder or function at right-back when required.

At 20, Thiaw has done well to ensure regular first-team football in German football. However, only time will tell whether he can maintain his high standards if Liverpool decide to bring him to England in the future.

Joe Gomez has been far too injury-prone while Nathaniel Phillips has got less than six months remaining in his Anfield contract. Hence, Jurgen Klopp can definitely use someone of Thiaw’s skillset to bolster his defence this month.

We can expect the German centre-half to add more bite and steel to Liverpool’s defence and could help the Merseyside club compete for multiple trophies in the coming seasons. With all things considered, Thiaw will be a decent choice for the Reds to consider this January or at the end of this campaign as long as he can make a smooth transition to life in English football.

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