Jurgen Klopp delight as star destined for Liverpool tipped to become ‘world’s best player’ in his position
Jurgen Klopp has been given a boost after a top player heavily linked with Liverpool was backed to become the ‘best player in the world’ in his position.
Liverpool need to sort out the midfield area as a priority this summer. Several of Klopp’s current options in the position are either prone to injuries or past their best.
Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are expected to leave Anfield on free transfers when their contracts expire at the end of June.
They could be replaced by England internationals Jude Bellingham and Mason Mount. Liverpool have spoken to Bellingham about joining them from Borussia Dortmund, although competition will arise from Real Madrid and Manchester City for him.
According to The Telegraph, Liverpool and Manchester United could swoop in for Mount amid his stalling Chelsea contract talks. They are described as being at a ‘stalemate’ right now.
If Bellingham and Mount move elsewhere, then Liverpool could go after Joao Palhinha and Nicolo Barella instead.
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But midfield is not the only position Liverpool need to improve ready for next season. Central defence also needs strengthening.
When Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate have been out injured this season, opposition teams have capitalised on the weaknesses affecting Joel Matip and Joe Gomez.
Huge praise for Liverpool-linked player
Liverpool cannot afford such slip ups in future if they are to get back to the summit of English and European football. And due to this, they are preparing to go big with a move for RB Leipzig’s Josko Gvardiol.
On March 10, transfer insider Graeme Bailey told TEAMtalk that Liverpool are ‘hugely keen’ on the centre-half. However, as with Bellingham, other clubs will pose a threat. They include City, Tottenham and Real.
Despite Gvardiol’s Leipzig team losing 7-0 to City on Tuesday night – during which Erling Haaland scored an incredible five goals – BT Sport pundit Owen Hargreaves thinks the Croatia international will one day become the world’s best player in his position.
“I think the boys said it, three centre-backs in the studio before, all top players. He [Gvardiol], I think, is an absolute top one,” Hargreaves said (via talkSPORT).
“I think he’ll be the best centre-back in the world one day. He’s learned a lot today, and probably wouldn’t mind playing in a team like this rather than against them.”
Leipzig conceding seven against City shows that Gvardiol may still have some learning to do. But he will not be playing a team like City, or a striker like Haaland, every week.
As Hargreaves suggests, Gvardiol will improve when playing for a top-class team such as Liverpool or City. At Anfield for example, he could learn from Klopp and Van Dijk. This would be a big help on his journey to becoming one of the world’s best defenders.
The 21-year-old will cost somewhere between £88-100m to sign this summer. According to The Athletic, he has a release clause in his Leipzig deal which activates next summer. That should be worth less than £88m, making his transfer more affordable.
While Gvardiol could join Liverpool, West Ham and Newcastle are pursuing a centre-back who will soon leave Klopp’s squad.