Liverpool’s midfield revolution is set to really spring into gear this week with the sales of Fabinho and Jordan Henderson set to spark the Reds into a series of deals of their own – with up to three new arrivals on the horizon for Jurgen Klopp.
The Merseysiders suffered a truly disappointing 2022/23 season, finishing fifth and outside the Champions League places for the first time since 2016. And with their midfield identified as a major area of weakness, Klopp has moved quickly to strengthen their options.
Indeed, a few days after the season drew to a close, the club confirmed the £35m signing of Alexis Mac Allister from Brighton. Dominik Szoboszlai soon followed after they triggered his £60m exit clause at RB Leipzig.
And with a new No 8 and No 10 on board, Klopp wants to complete a perfect summer by also signing a new No 6.
To that end, talks over a deal for Romeo Lavia have been going on for some time. Southampton, however, are standing by a £50m valuation for the Belgian. And while Liverpool have seen an initial £35m offer rejected, there appears optimism a deal can be struck.
Heading into the summer window – and having already waved farewell to James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita – it seemed unlikely there would be any more midfield exits on Merseyside.
However, the strong-arm approach from the Saudi Arabian Pro-league appears to have significantly shifted the landscape.
To that end, deals to take Fabinho to Al-Ittihad is close to reaching a conclusion.
Liverpool want two more signings after Romeo Lavia
The Brazilian has been left out of Liverpool’s pre-season training camp in Germany as talks over a deal progress.
A deal to take Jordan Henderson, meanwhile, to Al Ettifaq is a little further away. They had hoped to sign the midfielder on a free transfer, only for Liverpool to respond with a £10m valuation on the 33-year-old.
The England midfielder has, however, already agreed a £700,000 a week deal over three years.
With the duo seemingly more likely to leave, Klopp will suddenly have the funds, and space, in his squad to make further additions. To that end, Klopp will reportedly target two more signings in addition to Lavia.
To that end, Monday’s Transfer Gossip detailed Liverpool plans to gazump West Ham to the signing of Joao Palhinha.
The Portuguese star has made a big impression since leaving Sporting Lisbon for Fulham.
And having paid £20m for him just 12 months ago, the Cottagers can expect to at the least double their investment.
To that end, Liverpool can expect to pay up to £50m for the 27-year-old.
In addition, the Reds are also back in the market to sign long-term target Ryan Gravenberch this summer.
Klopp made an approach to sign the Netherlands international in 2022, only to see him opt for Bayern Munich.
However, the 21-year-old’s move to Bavaria has not gone as planned. Indeed, the midfielder only managed three starts in the Bundesliga during a frustrating campaign.
Liverpool get clearance to sign Ryan Gravenberch
And having been overlooked by the Netherlands in their World Cup squad, the player made clear his wish to feature more frequently in the upcoming 2023/24 season.
Now reports claim Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel has cleared Gravenberch to leave. The Bundesliga champions are closing on deals to sign both Kyle Walker and Harry Kane. However, the double deal will cost in excess of €100m and they need to recoup some funds.
As a result, Gravenberch is among those who have been told they can leave. And while some reports claim Bayern will seek a fee of around €25m (£21.5m), it’s also suggested Tuchel would prefer the midfielder to only leave on a season’s loan.
Either way, Gravenberch is very much back on Liverpool’s radar.
And speaking to talkSPORT (16/07/23, 8.12am), journalist Dominic King claims the Dutchman is very much in Klopp’s sights.
Asked about Klopp replacements for Fabinho and Henderson, King had a firm reply.
“Ryan Gravenberch at Bayern Munich who they’ve had a long-standing interest in,” he stated.
“They were of the belief that Bayern Munich wouldn’t want to let him go, they think an awful lot of him.
“But I think the fact that they’re still looking at him Liverpool suggests that he’s somebody that they could [move for].
“I’m not going to say anything’s going to happen because at this stage of the transfer window, it would be ridiculous to say, all I would make clear is that he’s a target they’re looking at.”
In addition to Gravenberch, Bayern are also willing to sell Benjamin Pavard and Leon Goretska this summer.