It is widely believed that Liverpool have concluded their transfer business this summer. However, rumors of players linked with moves to Anfield continue to circulate at large.
The club has acquired three players this season. However, this has freshened up the three sections of their team. The signing of Calvin Ramsay, Fabio Carvalho, and Darwin Nunez has given some serious depth to the defense, midfield, and attack respectively.
The Reds failed to sign Aurelien Tchouameni this season. To compensate for this supposed “lack of depth” in the center, they are looking to sign the services of Nico Barella from Inter Milan. The midfielder is worth £85m.
Liverpool admiration for Nico Barella
Speaking ahead of their tie with Inter Milan in the Champions League, Jurgen Klopp had the following to say about the midfielder
“He is a really good player, a really good player. I like him a lot,” Klopp said. He has all the things you want from a midfield player. He’s aggressive, he’s technically [good], he can run for ages and all these kinds of things.”
With such praises, rumors linking the player to Liverpool were bound to fly. The 25-year-old has had the most creative season yet of his career. He set up 12 goals for Inter. Only seven players collected more assists than Barella (one of them was Mo Salah)
Barella is a very technically gifted player. He can press and carry the ball well. He also has superior crossing and passing skills. However, a transfer to Liverpool seems unlikely to happen at this point.
Midfielders in Liverpool are not expected to create goals. However, Barella’s record puts this lack of potency in sharp focus. Jurgen Klopp started nine different men in the midfield for Liverpool last season. In these appearances, the midfield contributed to 12 goals, perfectly matching Barella’s figures.
Liverpool has an excellent midfield
With the midfielders Klopp has at his disposal, it seems like a waste to sign another one. Liverpool did go for Tchouameni but that was due to his availability and not because of a lack of quality in the midfield.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is set to stay at Liverpool. He plans to play out the rest of his contract. He has a contract for just one more year with the Reds. Naturally, this means the need for reinforcements at midfield disappears. Moreover, Oxlade-Chamberlain is most similar to Barella.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is among the top four percent of midfielders in Europe for pressing in the final third and pressure success rate. He also excels in carrying the ball into the opposition box and putting in cheeky passes into the penalty box of the opposition.
Liverpool already have a Barella in the form of Oxlade-Chamberlain. However, his consistency is a major issue for the Reds. His performances were a bit underwhelming at times. However, he is still producing at a very high standard. It will be interesting to see how often he starts for the Reds next season.