Premier League • England

Five Liverpool deals Michael Edwards could make, with first coup already agreed

Ben Stewart
Michael Edwards has some ambitious targets in mind

Michael Edwards has some ambitious targets in mind

Michael Edwards has returned to Liverpool in order to oversee the post-Jurgen Klopp era at Anfield and his first coup has already been agreed.

The former Sporting Director oversaw Liverpool’s transfer business from 2016 to 2022 and he was responsible for some big decisions in that time.

It was Edwards who reportedly pushed for the signing of Mohamed Salah in 2017 and he also played a key role in luring the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Alisson Becker to the club.

With Klopp set to leave at the end of the season, a lot of uncertainty currently surrounds Liverpool. However, with Edwards back in charge of football operations, the Reds will be in safe hands.

We’ve taken a closer look at Edwards and have assessed the first five deals that he could make upon his return to the club.

Richard Hughes

With Edwards himself stepping into a senior football operations role, his first job was to finalise the appointment of a new sporting director and he’s already managed to get this deal over the line.

Last month, Fabrizio Romano confirmed that a deal for Bournemouth technical director Hughes has already been agreed upon, with the 44-year-old set to join Liverpool on June 1.

Hughes is highly thought-of in the footballing world, having been responsible for some of Bournemouth’s best signings over the last 10 years.

During his time at the Vitality Stadium, he oversaw deals for the likes of Callum Wilson, Dominic Solanke and Nathan Ake.

With Edwards returning to the club and having someone like Hughes as part of the team, Liverpool should be in safe hands heading into the post-Klopp era.

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Ruben Amorim

Undoubtedly, the biggest task that Edwards faces is deciding upon Klopp’s successor. While Xabi Alonso was the clear front-runner for the Liverpool job just a few weeks ago, the Bayer Leverkusen boss has since ruled himself out of the race.

With Alonso happy to stay put in the Bundesliga for the time being, Liverpool have been assessing alternative options and it seems like Amorim is their man.

The 39-year-old has been the Sporting head coach since March 2020 and he’s garnered a huge reputation in that time. He’s managed to win four trophies with the Portuguese club and currently has his side sitting top of the table.

According to TEAMtalk sources, the Reds have struck a verbal agreement with Amorim for him to take over at the end of the season.

However, earlier this month, the Portuguese boss distanced himself from the speculation and reaffirmed his commitment to Sporting for the time being.

“To end everything around, this is the last time I talk about my future,” the 39-year-old said.

“There was no interview, much less an agreement [with Liverpool]. The only thing we all want here is to be champions for Sporting, and nothing will change.”

Despite Amorim’s denials, TEAMtalk understands that while no agreement has yet been made official, representatives of Amorim have held talks with Liverpool officials and there is a strong belief the 39-year-old is willing to make the move in the summer.

Mohamed Salah

One of the most pressing issues facing Edwards relates to the future of Salah. The 31-year-old is out of contract in 2025 and the club will be faced with a big decision this summer.

According to Football Insider, Liverpool have been told they can ‘name their price’ for the Egyptian forward with Saudi Pro League sides ready to spend big on luring the superstar to the Middle East.

The Reds snubbed a gigantic £150m offer from Al-Ittihad in the summer, but they could see the upcoming window as the ideal chance to cash in on the 31-year-old.

It will be up to Edwards and his team to determine Salah’s market value and decide whether to sell him this summer. Alternatively, the club could look to tie him down to a new contract.

Despite being the wrong side of 30, Salah is still one of the best players in the world and Liverpool would be hard-pressed to immediately replace him.

The 31-year-old is Liverpool’s top scorer this season with 23 goals and that’s despite missing a chunk of the campaign through injury. Whether he stays or goes, Edwards will no doubt have a big say on his future.

Marc Guehi

Signing another central defender to compete with the likes of Van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate is seen as a priority for Liverpool in the summer.

With Joel Matip’s contract set to expire at the end of the campaign, the club are currently on the hunt for his long-term replacement and Guehi is a name who continues to be linked with the Reds.

Last month, TEAMtalk sources revealed that Liverpool have made contact with the representatives of Guehi ahead of a potential move. 

The Crystal Palace defender is under contract at Selhurst Park until 2026 and reports have indicated that the club are looking for a minimum of £50m for the England international.

Liverpool aren’t alone in their interest in Guehi either as the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham have also been sniffing around the 23-year-old.

There’s no doubt that Guehi would boost Liverpool’s defensive options, although the club does have several alternative targets in mind if they aren’t able to prize him away from Selhurst Park.

Florian Wirtz

This would be an ambitious swoop by Liverpool and will likely be even harder to pull off with Alonso staying put in Leverkusen.

The dynamic attacking midfielder has enjoyed a tremendous season with Bayer Leverkusen, producing an impressive 35 goal contributions across all competitions.

In November last year, TEAMtalk sources revealed that Leverkusen would only consider selling Wirtz for a fee of €100m (£85.5m) which certainly isn’t cheap.

Although with his current skill set and obvious potential, a number of clubs will surely be tempted to submit an offer for the 20-year-old in the summer.

While Liverpool are among the clubs keen on signing the dynamic midfielder, prizing him out of Germany won’t be straightforward.

Wirtz’s representative and father, Hans-Joachim Wirtz, recently spoke about the 20-year-old and why he seems content to stay with Leverkusen for the time being.

“Florian has a contract in Leverkusen until 2027,” he told Kolner Stadt-Anzeiger. “That is roughly how long he will stay at Leverkusen. There’s no answer what will happen when. We should wait for the next two years and then we’ll see what happens.”

“Florian is very lucky to have Xabi Alonso, who brings a lot of qualities. He has a great relationship with the whole team. It’s the right coach at the right time.”

READ MORE – The frightening XI Liverpool could select if Ruben Amorim takes charge in the Anfield dugout