I remain calm and upbeat about Liverpool boss Jürgen Klopp strengthening his squad this summer, despite the transfer window clock running down. I have always believed that we would.
In my last editorial on KopTalk, I wrote: ‘It would be foolish for the club to think it can just sit still because we won the Champions League. Manchester City won the Premier League and they are already close to signing Spanish midfielder Rodri, an outstanding player that will make Pep’s midfield even more secure. He’s not resting on his laurels. Liverpool mustn’t either.’
And we mustn’t.
I’m often asked on the members’ website, KopTalk.TV and DKB.TV as to why I think we haven’t yet made any significant progress in the market during the current window. My response has always been that I believed we had identified targets but that their holding clubs were inflating their valuations because we were the European Champions. I still believe this to be the case.
It’s a tricky one because we can’t allow ourselves to be ripped off. Take Nabil Fekir for example. I believe that the boss was still interested in him before he made the switch to Real Betis for £17.7million. A £15million ceiling is said to have been imposed. It may only be a difference of a few million but let’s not forget that the deal that saw Nabil make the switch to Spain also included his brother Yassin.
Liverpool mustn’t pay over the odds but I don’t believe that every player that’s out there will cost the world. Rodri went on to complete his move to Manchester City for a fee of around £62.4million. Klopp draws comparisons with City’s spending and says we can’t compete with them. Maybe so when you look at their spending over several seasons. However, Liverpool have banked record TV money and lucrative sums as a result of their Champions League success over Tottenham. We can afford to invest heavily and sensibly into the squad. We can match £62.4million.
The boss says money is there but we aren’t a club that can afford to spend crazy money. I get that. We understand that. If the boss says he’s happy with his squad, fair enough. But many supporters expect us to show some real intent and to build on the capture of that 6th European Cup and I’m one of them.
It’s not the first time that the manager has felt the need to point out he can’t compete financially with the likes of Manchester City and Barcelona, he said something similar last week, but do we always have to?
I’m really split on this. I don’t want us to be ripped off and I want to have complete faith in the manager’s decisions, but we do have to ask ourselves if we could be doing better in the market, especially after losing a couple of senior players.
Adam Lallana was billed as a new signing but he’s about as reliable as me when it comes to writing a book. Like Daniel Sturridge before him, you can’t count on him. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is another player that we are being told is a new signing. Yes, of course, it’s great to welcome players back from long term injuries but are we really that naive that we don’t expect to lose someone else during the next campaign?
I don’t want to criticise the boss and the owners but I do understand why the fans are growing restless. But we have no choice but to remain patient and see what happens. I’d be stunned if nothing happened because my sources (this is a fancy word for my friends who know some sh*t) suggest we have a couple of deals that we could get over the line but if we won’t cough up, they simply won’t happen.
I think it would be very unenthusiastic and very weak for us to rest on our laurels. Our Champions League success is history. Maybe we could go on and win it again with the current squad but no Liverpool fan would disagree that the more options that we have in the squad, the better, especially when you look at the number of competitions we will participate in next term.
I believe in the manager and I will keep the faith that we will see at least one addition before the transfer window slams shut. If we only manage one, I expect it will be a versatile defender. There are midfield options that we could conclude within days if we wanted to.
Our Champions League success left the supporters hungry for more. Instead we’ve been left scratching our heads wondering why the club isn’t sending out a statement of intent to every footballing giant out there. The only statement we’re currently sending is a subdued one.
Despite winning the league, Manchester City have shown they mean business, we should be doing so too, especially if we want to beat them to the title.
I’m a little concerned but I’m going to continue keeping the faith.
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