Liverpool are set to face competition from Arsenal in their pursuit of Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland, who could be available for £40 million in the summer.
According to The Sun, Liverpool have been named a price in their efforts to land Jack Butland to relieve their goalkeeping woes to some extent. However, Arsenal have now entered the chase and are looking to rival Liverpool in pursuit of the Stoke goalkeeper when the transfer window reopens.
As per the report, Stoke could be willing to part with their prized asset for around £40 million in the summer, which again would break the record for the most expensive goalkeeper, one which has been set by Ederson, who arrived at Manchester City in the summer.
And while Liverpool could be ready to stump up the record fee to solve their goalkeeping problems, Arsenal’s entry could complicate things.
Jack Butland was hailed as the true successor to Joe Hart in the England setup from the get-go. And the Englishman has not disappointed one bit, especially with some consistent performances under his belt after joining Stoke City. The player’s form saw him displace Joe Hart as the number one for the senior Three Lions side.
But, a long-term injury and the subsequent rise of Jordan Pickford now sees him contend with the Everton custodian to be the first-choice, while also struggling for form in the Stoke goal, so much so that he has conceded 46 goals in 24 Premier League appearances so far this season, uncharacteristic of a goalkeeper of his quality.
Jurgen Klopp wants £40 million goalkeeper Jack Butland from Stoke, according to The Sun. pic.twitter.com/LNeYCXYUuJ
— RumorsTransfers 24/7 (@rumorstransfers) February 11, 2018
Still, the interest in him has not ceded one bit, with Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool all linked with the player, with even Manchester United being interested in the Englishman, in case David De Gea leaves for Real Madrid in the summer.
At Liverpool, goalkeeping problems have not eased since the arrival of Loris Karius. The German stuttered at the start and while he may have finally become the undisputed first-choice at Anfield, both he and Mignolet have produced sub-par outings far too often to be considered as a permanent first-choice.
Liverpool were linked heavily with Alisson and while there are reports that the Reds will resume their pursuit of the Brazilian in the summer, the entry of PSG and Real Madrid in the race means that they are unlikely to be the keeper’s preference.
Arsenal, on the other hand, have seen signs of age finally catching up to the legendary Petr Cech. And while the former Chelsea man produced a brilliant performance against Tottenham, there is an urgent need to bring in a quality long-term option in the summer.
Jack Butland is an enterprising prospect for both the clubs and many more. The player will not only boost the Home Grown quota, but also be able to provide quality service for perhaps the next decade or so. The £40 million price tag might be far from nominal but if one breaks the fee down to the years of service he will be able to provide, the impact is more than likely to eclipse the money spent.
Butland would hope to rescue his Stoke side away from the relegation zone with wondrous performances, which in turn could boost his chances of earning a move to one of the ‘Top six teams’, be it Liverpool, Arsenal or a surprise new entrant.