After a sensational 2018-19 campaign, do Liverpool need to make any significant investments in the summer transfer window to boost their squad?
It is a great time to be a Liverpool supporter. The Merseyside giants ended their trophy drought since 2012 this past season, as they went on to lift the UEFA Champions League – their sixth European triumph. Jurgen Klopp’s brigade came ever so close to win their first-ever Premier League title, but missed out just by a point to eventual champions Manchester City.
Ever since Klopp took over the reins at Anfield from Brendan Rodgers, the progress that Liverpool have achieved has been quite evident. And now that they have tasted their first success under the German tactician, the Reds will want to step it up a notch in the next season and push for multiple honours.
Liverpool’s success under Klopp has been built on a strong, well-rounded squad that oozes quality across all departments. The last summer transfer window was one of the best the Reds have had with the likes of Fabinho, Alisson Becker arriving and making immediate impact, playing a huge role in their triumph.
Ahead of the next season, do Liverpool need another summer transfer window with significant investment?
Transfer window so far
Liverpool, so far, have lost star striker Daniel Sturridge after his contract ran out. Left-back Alberto Moreno too departed this summer once his contract expired as well, while Danny Ings made his transfer to Southampton permanent. Full-back Rafael Camacho left the club to join Portuguese club Sporting Lisbon.
Reserve goalkeeper Adam Bogdan has been released, whereas talented youngsters Sheyi Ojo and Marko Grujic have been loaned out to Rangers and Hertha Berlin respectively. Teenager Sepp van den Berg is the only arrival till date, joining from Dutch outfit PEC Zwolle.
Second-choice goalkeeper Simon Mignolet has been heavily linked with a departure from Anfield all summer, with there being plenty of interest in his services among a number of Premier League clubs. Defender Dejan Lovren has emerged as a target for Serie A giants AC Milan and although the Rossoneri are reluctant to meet Liverpool’s asking price for the Croatian, there is a good chance he could be on his way out.
Ryan Kent has been linked with a return to Rangers, but little progress has been made on that front. Harry Wilson has been mooted for a return to Derby County on loan as well, while Ben Woodburn continues to attract interest from a number of Championship clubs too.
Liverpool easily have one of the best starting XIs in the Premier League, with Alisson in goal protected by a defensive line of Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andrew Robertson, Joel Matip and Virgil van Dijk. In Fabinho, they have one of the best defensive midfielders in Europe, complemented by captain Jordan Henderson and Gini Wijnaldum. The terrific attacking trio of Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane can induce fear in any defence.
There is quality cover in almost every position on the field as well, with Joe Gomez providing options at right-back and centre-back. And with Klopp’s propensity of giving youngsters a shot, the likes of Ki-Jana Hoever and Sepp van den Berg could be integrated into the first-team picture. So Lovren’s potential departure shouldn’t hurt the side much.
James Milner continues to age like fine wine and will once again be a valuable member for Klopp, while the return to full-fitness of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will, in itself, be like a new signing. And add to it the presence of Naby Keita should provide Liverpool with enough depth in the middle of the park as well.
Xherdan Shaqiri did not have the most impactful of the debut seasons with Liverpool having arrived last summer, but given his experience and quality, he is still someone that Klopp can rely on in the final third. Divock Origi proved his worth with some key goals last term and has been rewarded with a new contract and in all likelihood will be given a bigger role this time out.
Academy product Rhian Brewster has also recovered from a long-term injury and should provide Klopp further ammunition in the final third. Should Liverpool hold on to the likes of Kent, Woodburn and Wilson, the attacking department will also have plenty of options.
Should Mignolet end up leaving, Alisson will be the only goalkeeper left in the squad with Bogdan having already left. Alberto Moreno’s departure leaves Liverpool light in the left-back department as well, with Andrew Robertson being the only out and out left-sided full-back on the roster. While James Milner has done a sterling job of filling up in that position previously, Klopp might still have some concerns.
While the attacking department looks well-stacked, most options at Klopp’s disposal aren’t exactly of the same quality as his first-choice trio of Salah, Mane and Firmino. And that could be another potential area where Liverpool might have some reservations, as they look to build on their last season’s success and challenge on multiple fronts.
While there is no questioning that Liverpool have a solid squad filled with quality options, if they are to enjoy sustained success, investments will be needed in this summer transfer window. A new left-back should be a major priority for Klopp, while a backup goalkeeper would also be a welcome addition.
And despite the options that Liverpool might have in their attack, another world-class forward who can play anywhere across the front-line, such as Nicolas Pepe, who had been linked with the Reds, could go a long way in boosting their chances of pipping Manchester City from their perch in English football.