Jurgen Klopp can look to summer transfer target to ease Liverpool defensive concern – Liverpool Echo

Jurgen Klopp can look to summer transfer target to ease Liverpool defensive concern – Liverpool Echo

Liverpool insist they are unlikely to sign a central defender this month, but that will not stop Reds fans from wanting that stance to change.

“I cannot say definitely we won’t bring any [defenders] in,” said Jurgen Klopp on Thursday. “But it’s just not likely because of the situation in the world.”

Not making an addition at the back, though, would appear to be a risk.

Klopp and Michael Edwards have successfully taken what has been perceived as major gambles before, but not when a title challenge is well underway – and one where Liverpool are defending champions.

But they have a tendency to only sign players who are perfect for the long-term strategy.

“They must have been looking in the summer because there is no way they would let Dejan Lovren go and not have a list of candidates,” said Ollie Connelly on the Liverpool.com podcast.

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“They were sniffing around Lloyd Kelly for 18 months and all clubs have a long-term list of targets.

“The guys they would really want are probably playing in the Champions League and that is where you get into the difficult thing of [trying to do a deal] – two of them might be playing against them in the last-16.

“The short-term answer is tricky because you won’t have anyone that Klopp will fully trust and get the intricacies of the tactical system.

“But I think they should get a body in. If Rhys Williams or Jordan Henderson is still the best option then fine, but at least you have a body if Joel Matip or Fabinho goes down.

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“If it is someone who is in the Klopp ecosystem in the Bundesliga or whatever [then do it]. It can be someone who you can spin and re-sell in six months.

“The concept that they have to get someone like Dayot Upamecano is silly. If they get someone in who is fine for 18 months then that is fine.

“They just need that option to help them defend the title.”

Bournemouth’s Kelly was among the players that Liverpool looked at during the summer, when they ended up signing Kostas Tsimikas as their only defensive supplement, so the defender is a player they have scouted extensively before.

As an England youth international, he would also not have to be signed on the basis of another player being moved on first.

If Virgil van Dijk makes the squad for the second half of the season, he will have to be included on the squad list to be submitted at the end of the transfer window.

Michael Edwards and Jurgen Klopp.jpg 

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So if Liverpool believe he can play any part at all before the end of the campaign, then they would need to lose a foreign player in order to sign one.

Signing Kelly, though, who has made 17 Championship appearances this season, would not affect that, given that he is British.

Liverpool are more likely not to sign anyone such is their preference for buying only the perfect player for their long-term plan.

This season, though, would surely be the time to change that stance if they are ever going to, and Kelly is a player they are known to have liked before.