Jamie Carragher believes that Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool ship will soon run aground unless the club’s owners invest heavily in the squad.
Fenway Sports Group (FSG) have turned the Anfield side’s fortunes around impressively in their time there. Not only have they brought in Klopp and funded a host of star signings, but they have done so shrewdly. Indeed, they only spend what they earn, with Ibrahima Konate’s recent arrival funded by a host of exits.
However, following the likes of Romelu Lukaku’s £97.5million move to Chelsea and Manchester United spending £73million on Jadon Sancho, calls have emerged for Liverpool to do more.
The Reds did spend big to bring in Virgil van Dijk and Alisson Becker in 2018 and 2019. However, those deals came following Philippe Coutinho’s sale to Barcelona.
Writing in his column for The Telegraph, Carragher voiced concern for how long Liverpool can keep their record up.
“Over the past six years, Liverpool have been among the best-run clubs in world football,” he wrote. “But I have a nagging fear. How long can they keep beating the system to challenge for the Premier League and Champions League?
“Another transfer window has passed with Liverpool the 14th-biggest spenders in the country. A year ago they were 10th on that list, having spent less on new players than Sheffield United and Newcastle United.
“Since 2015, Jurgen Klopp’s net spend is £96.8 million – an average of £16.1m per season in charge – and the lowest of the traditional ‘big six’.
“It defies conventional wisdom that you can repeatedly win the biggest titles when your recruitment budget is dwarfed by your nearest rivals.”
Carragher noted that the arrivals of Alisson and Van Dijk were “game-changing” for Liverpool. The club have since tied the pair – as well as several other key stars – to new contracts.
The ex-Liverpool centre-back said: “Those pivotal purchases will serve the club into a fourth season, and will thrive for longer.
“However, you cannot help look at the age of Klopp’s squad without arguing another big transfer window is due soon. With so many key players tied down for the long-term, there should be more funds available to buy new players in a year’s time.”
Carragher warns of Liverpool priorities
Carragher insisted that Liverpool needed a new striker instead. Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah are proven options, but they will feature in the Africa Cup of Nations in the middle of the season.
Furthermore, he said critics of Liverpool’s recruitment policy “must recognise” that the club have the second-highest wage bill in the Premier League.
Concerns are also arising about the future of sporting director Michael Edwards.
He has proved influential in securing Liverpool’s stars, tying them down and selling others for profit. However, reports claim that he could leave at the end of the season.
“Should Edwards not renew his deal, does FSG have so much faith in their model that replacements can slot into place and keep the engine running? You can understand why supporters fear Klopp and to some extent Edwards are irreplaceable,” Carragher said.
Liverpool are looking to mount a renewed title charge this season after doing well to finish third last term.