Premier League • England

Arthur Melo: Report reveals he was fourth choice on Jurgen Klopp’s wanted list and Liverpool pushed hard for Chelsea man instead

Arthur Melo, LIverpool midfielder, warms up at Goodison Park, before Premier League game v Everton

The prospects of Liverpool making the Arthur Melo loan deal into a permanent move have been called into question before he has even kicked a ball for Jurgen Klopp’s side.

The Reds moved to seal the signing of the Brazilian international on transfer deadline day. He moves to Anfield on a season’s loan from Juventus, with Liverpool having the option to make the move a permanent £32.3m deal next summer.

News of his arrival was quickly welcomed by Klopp. His squad has been decimated by injuries to their midfield area. Indeed, Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Curtis Jones and Thiago have all suffered injuries this season. And when Jordan Henderson suffered a hamstring injury in Wednesday’s win over Newcastle, Liverpool were forced to act.

Soon after his arrival, a beaming Klopp revealed his delight at the Liverpool signing.

And Arthur Melo arrives on Merseyside with a ringing endosement from the great Lionel Messi.

He will hope to get the game time needed to convince Klopp to turn the move into a permanent deal.

However, a report now claims he was not even the Reds’ first choice signing on transfer deadline day. As per the Liverpool Echo, sporting director Julian Ward made enquiries for four other players. All of those hit a brick wall, with three of them, currently in the Premier League.

Indeed, subject of the Reds’ advances were Douglas Luiz, Ruben Neves and Moises Caicedo. However, advances to all three were waved away.

Brighton and Wolves were unwilling to part with Caicedo and Neves at any price. Villa were a little more open to the sale of Luiz. However, as Arsenal also found out, Villa put a hefty £40m asking price on the midfielder. And despite his deal expiring next summer, they were unwilling to consider offers below that.

Liverpool asked about Denis Zakaria before Arthur Melo

According to Gianluca Di Marzio, Liverpool also made enquiries to Juventus for Denis Zakaria. The Italian journalist claims the Switzerland star was Liverpool’s first line of contact with Juventus as they sought an answer to their midfield issues.

However, Liverpool’s efforts for Zakaria were quickly batted away when they were told that the player was bound for Chelsea. They ultimately ended up signing him in a season-long loan deal with a view to a permanent deal.

The arrangement is much the same as Liverpool’s arrangement for Arthur, who Juventus quickly pointed out was available for a move.

That was an option Liverpool were happy to take up and it will now be down to the player to make the most of that chance.

And he has quickly spoken of his desire to make an impact on Merseyside.

“I’m really, really happy to be here wearing this great shirt with this famous badge that represents so much in world football, it’s a dream.

“We talked a lot, and our ideas and visions were a good fit so I’m sure it was the right choice.

“I’m really happy and highly motivated to continue living my dream on the pitch and giving my all in a Liverpool shirt.

“Liverpool have a wonderful history in football. I’ve played against Liverpool, I know what it feels like to be in the stadium with the fans behind them,” Arthur added in his first Reds interview.

“I was with the opposition and now I’m on the right side so I’m really excited. It’s a massive club with a great manager, great players. As I said before, it’s a dream to be here.”

READ MORE: Klopp hails special moment for Roberto Firmino as Reds star brings up landmark