Jurgen Klopp doesn’t like the idea of talking about his purchases but he set the scene for Liverpool’s summer activity with his comment this weekend. The current quad has proved too small and with the expected next season of European Football he will need a much bigger team. He admitted that some of his current charges have not shown the required consistency during the entire campaign.
Klopp doesn’t agree to the notion that the answers are available in transfer market. This is pretty much true in case of Liverpool and not just because of their tendency to be gazumped by their rivals or to miss out on most of the major targets.
It is not a difficult task to complete deals initially but it is hard to identify possible arrivals. It is very easy to rule out players according to Klopp’s system than to find players for the team. Klopp’s tactics are idiosyncratic and most of them do not fit into the system. In order to fit into the squad he needs charges that are persuasively fit and capable of topping the running statistics.
If we look at it position by position, Klopp’s favourite striker is neither the target man Christian Benteke nor the predatory Daniel Sturridge. He is fond of Roberto Firmino which shows that he wants a forward who is the first line of the defence. He doesn’t want a specialist and would rather prefer a multi-tasker. Firmino said during an interview that he can play all of the offensive positions.
A new winger cannot be of the touchline-hugging variety and Klopp’s wide men mostly operate within the width of the penalty area. They are more inside-forwards than outside-left and outside-right. Based on the current glut of attacking midfielders, the market might provide many options. But it is significant that no one can replicate Mane’s contribution and the way he added a different dimension with the pace to accelerate beyond defences.
Liverpool’s sync was disturbed when others were pulled out of their position first when Coutinho was injured and then when Mane left for Africa Nation’s Cup duty. Klopp might be in search of a midfielder after the evolving doubts about Emre Can’s future. Klopp’s squad operate further up the field than most and he once said in an interview that if you play really high then the opponents do not play. The job description is different for Klopp and it has changed in the past few years. Milner has put in the second most crosses in the Premier League this season. This shows how much time he spends in attack than the average left-back.
This has a knock on effect for the central defenders. Lucas is out of contract and Lovren is finding new ways to get injured. This calls for the need of an addition to the team. Klopp has a high defensive line and he needs the recovery pace when a ball is played over the top. Klopp is looking for players with a midfielder’s skillset throughout the side. Liverpool has a different way of playing and that makes it difficult to play against them. But when it comes to recruiting players they create troubles for themselves. The style that Klopp is looking for in his players will make it difficult for him to find the suitable ones.