Premier League • England

Liverpool concoct plan for West Ham, Leeds gems, as pair face January axe

Leeds forward Raphinha

Liverpool are biding their time over potential pursuits for West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen and Leeds United’s Raphinha, though two Reds deals could be sanctioned in January, per a report.

Widespread reports have put Liverpool in the mix to land Bowen or Raphinha in a future transfer window. Both the Hammers and Whites wingers would seemingly be a perfect match for Jurgen Klopp’s demands on paper.

Both are aged 24 and are more than willing to put in the hard yards from a defensive standpoint. Their pace, movement and ability to beat players one on one would mesh well what Liverpool desire from their wide forwards.

Additionally, they would closely follow the trend Liverpool have set for who they target up front. Diogo Jota and Sadio Mane were both signed from mid-table Premier League sides and both took their game to new heights at Anfield.

The impending absences of Mane and Salah to the 2021 AFCON prompted speculation a January addition might be made in the forward line.

However, according to the Liverpool Echo, Raphinha or Bowen won’t be arriving next month.

The outlet confirm Liverpool are scouting the pair, but January moves aren’t in their plans at present.

Instead, the Reds’ recruitment team is ‘looking to add an attacker to the ranks’ before next season commences. The inference is a summer approach in 2022 is far more likely than one in January.

Vladimír Coufal, Jarrod Bowen, West Ham celeb

Liverpool open to double January exit

Rather than make additions, Liverpool are reportedly more concerned with trimming their squad.

Liverpool will ‘listen to the right offers’ for centre-half Nathaniel Phillips. The 24-year-old was relegated to fifth choice in his position following the arrival of Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig.

West Ham are interested in Liverpool's Nat Phillips

West Ham are interested in Liverpool's Nat Phillips

West Ham are preparing a £15million bid for Nat Phillips.

Today’s Paper Talk provided the latest on West Ham’s pursuit of the defender. Injuries to Angelo Ogbonna and Kurt Zouma have left David Moyes short of options at the back.

Loris Karius is another who could finally depart. The much-maligned goalkeeper’s contract expires next summer. However, Liverpool are reportedly willing to allow him to leave for free six months early.

Neco Williams’ name is also cited in the piece as a third player who could depart. Though the Welshman’s importance to Liverpool is far greater than Karius and Phillips given he is the first-choice back-up to Trent Alexander-Arnold.

Prem trio won’t be joining Reds

The Echo article then poured cold water on recent links putting Liverpool in the frame for three Premier League superstars.

The Reds have drawn tentative links with Chelsea’s Antonio Rudiger. The German is tracking to leave Chelsea next summer as a free agent, something that has caught the eye of Europe’s leading lights, including Liverpool.

However, not he, nor Kalvin Phillips or Declan Rice are Anfield-bound, per the article.

Liverpool are noted to be well stocked at centre-half, as evidenced by their willingness to sell Nat Phillips.

The Reds opted against signing a direct Georginio Wijnaldum replacement last summer. That has left the door ajar for all manner of midfielder to be linked with Jurgen Klopp’s side.

Nonetheless, with Jordan Henderson, Fabinho, James Milner, Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Thiago Alcantara and Harvey Elliot on the books, the club have ‘little appetite to bolster their midfield’.

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