Opinion

How Liverpool signings rate and what transfers Jurgen Klopp still needs to make

Liverpool have made three signings this summer but Jurgen Klopp still needs some more additions ahead of the 2017-18 season

Kieran Beckles
By Kieran Beckles
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp Photo: The Sport Review

How Liverpool’s signings so far have rated

Mohamed Salah

Mohamed Salah is Liverpool’s marquee signing in the current transfer window – so far. In any other summer, Liverpool spending £39m on a player would be big news. But in the context of the 2017 summer transfer market, the arrival of Salah has almost gone under the radar.

The Egypt international is now Liverpool’s most-expensive signing of all-time ahead of £35m flop Andy Carroll. While the former Chelsea winger isn’t the blockbuster signing that many Liverpool fans are craving, the 24-year-old is still an exciting addition. Liverpool struggled when Sadio Mane was out of action due to Africa Cup of Nations and injury last season.

Salah will be able to cover Mane in the event of another fitness setback next season. Perhaps more exciting is the prospect of Mane and Salah on either wing. Liverpool will have serious pace to utilise on the break away from home.

Dominic Solanke

Liverpool managed to lure Dominic Solanke from Chelsea in a free transfer. The 19-year-old’s arrival received a lukewarm reception but Solanke’s performance at the Under-20 World Cup soon changed that. The England Under-20 international scored twice in their 3-1 win against Italy in the semi-finals.

The teenager was named as the player of the tournament to follow in the footsteps of Barcelona icon Lionel Messi and Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero. Solanke is one to watch for the future and it will be interesting to see how much game time Jurgen Klopp is prepared to give the promising striker.

Andy Robertson

Hallelujah! Liverpool have finally signed a left-back after 12 months of playing midfielder James Milner at full-back. Andy Robertson isn’t the big-name signing that many Liverpool fans craved in what has been a problem position in recent season. But the 23-year-old is a promising player with international experience.

His transfer fee – £8m – will allow Klopp to dedicate funds to other areas of his squad where he needs to sign match-winners. Whether the Liverpool boss decides to stick with Milner at left-back at the start of the season is an interesting point of debate. With a more demanding fixture list this term, Robertson should get plenty of game time should Milner remain first-choice.

What other signing are required?

Virgil van Dijk

The Virgil van Dijk transfer saga continues to rumble on without the prospect of a conclusion on the horizon. Liverpool were reported to be on the brink of a club-record £60m deal to sign Van Dijk in June. However, Liverpool were forced to apologise in embarrassing circumstances.

The Reds released a statement to appease Southampton and officially ended their interest in Van Dijk. The apology hasn’t extinguished reports linking Liverpool with the Netherlands defender. The 26-year-old would be a statement signing given Liverpool’s defensive issues since Jamie Carragher’s retirement.

Naby Keita

A player that has a big reputation in the Bundesliga but perhaps a lot of Liverpool fans haven’t seen too much of apart from YouTube. Naby Keita helped RB Leipzig finish in second place in the Bundesliga last term with a return of eight goals and seven assists. The Guinea international impressed despite swapping the Austrian top flight for the Bundesliga last summer. Liverpool are thought to have failed with £57m and £65m bids for Keita.

These are staggering sums considering Liverpool’s previous transfer record before this summer was the £35m spent on Andy Carroll. However, a box-to-box midfielder would be welcome addition to the Liverpool team and Keita would certainly strengthen the club’s spine.

More depth

The big concern for Liverpool fans will be a lack of squad depth. Klopp was left with limited options on the bench during the second half of the season. The Liverpool boss was forced to rely on his starting XI to get the team over the line in the top-four race.

Philippe Coutinho managed to fire Liverpool to a Champions League spot with seven goals in his final 10 games. But the prospect of Champions League football being added into the fixture schedule will stretch the Liverpool squad in its current state. Klopp needs to add some experienced and quality squad members to his squad to avoid a serious injury headache.

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