Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is considering the prospect of using James Milner at left-back after failing with a bid to sign Leicester’s Ben Chilwell.
Klopp had earmarked 19-year-old Chilwell as his number one full-back target, but after seeing a £7million bid – consisting of £3.5million up front, with a further £3.5million in add-ons – rejected, the Anfield boss has abandoned the chase for the player, who has yet to start a Premier League game.
Klopp has made it clear he will not pay over the odds for players and he has now decided that £7million was their optimum offer for Chilwell, who was on loan at Huddersfield last term, under the guidance of Klopp’s former assistant David Wagner.
It leaves Liverpool with Alberto Moreno as first-choice left-back – a player who was heavily criticised after his performance in the Europa League final defeat to Sevilla and who had a rocky performance in the 1-0 friendly defeat to Chelsea earlier in the week.
That has led Klopp to experiment with the 30-year-old Milner at full-back. The former Leeds man ended the friendly game against Chelsea in that position and during training sessions at Stanford University Klopp has experimented with Milner in that position.
Ragnar Klavan, who arrived from Augsburg earlier this month, can play left-back, but Klopp is believed to see the 30-year-old as cover at centre-back, while Nathaniel Clyne can also play on the left, but Klopp will not be keen to remove him from his favoured position on the right.
Klopp may still opt to bring in defensive cover before the transfer window closes next month but has insisted he will not panic by paying out huge fees.
“If we are convinced someone is the right player then we think about money. Then we have the price, then we have to ask and work at it. Is this something we should do? If we agree then we will do it but only then for the right price,” said Klopp, whose men have games against AC Milan and Roma to come on their tour of the USA.