The 2017/18 campaign represented a pretty positive step in the right direction for Liverpool and their ardent supporters will be hopeful that progression is continued during next season.
The Reds might have lost the Champions League Final against Real Madrid at the end of the season but reaching such a stage represented a real achievement for Jurgen Klopp and the football club.
This summer will be massive for the German boss as he goes about assembling a squad that can finally make a genuine attempt to win the Premier League crown that has eluded Liverpool for so long.
Naby Keita and Fabinho have already been added to Klopp’s squad and more incoming activity is likely to take place at Anfield in the coming weeks prior to the campaign getting underway.
With the World Cup now done and dusted several clubs might begin to ramp up their transfer dealings and here at TBR Football we have identified five deals that could be completed by Liverpool this week…
Harry Wilson loaned to the Championship
The flying winger was a sensation during the second half of last season when he was loaned out to Hull City and a full season in the second tier might be on the cards for the youngster during 2018/19.
Frank Lampard is keen to take the 21-year-old to Derby County on a season-long loan, according to the Mirror, and it is a move that could be vital for Wilson’s progression, whilst some might see it as make or break in terms of him ever breaking into Liverpool’s first-team.
In Wilson’s 13 appearances for the Tigers last season he netted seven goals and provided four assists. The Rams will be hoping to see a similar level of form should they complete a temporary deal later this week.
Nabil Fekir deal revived
As per an article in the Mirror, there is every possibility that Liverpool could still complete a deal to sign France attacker Nabil Fekir from Lyon this summer.
The 24-year-old was reportedly close to signing for the Reds prior to joining up with France for the World Cup, although a deal never materialised for whatever reason.
Despite the arrival of Xherdan Shaqiri from Stoke City it seems likely that Liverpool will be in the market for another playmaker and Fekir fits the billing of a player who could have a real impact on the Premier League.
Complete deal for KAA Gent winger
Whilst adding stellar recruits to push for a title challenge is clearly the immediate priority for Liverpool, one eye will still be kept on the future and 23-year-old Moses Simon could represent a big signing in the coming years.
The young Nigerian has been linked with a move to Merseyside following an interview with AOI Football which has now sparked speculation surrounding Simon’s future.
Simon is a bit of an unknown quantity to Premier League supporters and if he does sign for Liverpool it will be interesting to see just what plans Klopp has for his development.
According to Spanish news outlet Sport, Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen is a target for Liverpool this summer and a price for the Dutchman has now been set by the Catalan giants.
The 29-year-old can apparently leave the current champions of Spain for £26.4 million and given his pedigree that would represent a decent piece of business for Liverpool should they get a deal over the line.
A new custodian has to be the priority for the Reds this summer with huge doubts cast over Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius last season, whilst youngster Danny Ward is inexperienced and unlikely to get a chance just yet given Liverpool’s Premier League ambitions.
Markovic on his way?
Despite relative promise when he first signed for Liverpool, the future of Lazar Markovic looks particularly bleak right now and he looks to be on his way out of the club this summer.
The 24-year-old hasn’t featured in Liverpool’s first-team friendlies to date and following the signing of Shaqiri he is now even further down the pecking order at Anfield.
It does remain to be seen at this stage just where he will end up but an article in the Liverpool Echo two weeks ago seemed to indicate that Markovic would be able to leave the club on the cheap.
Liverpool round-up: Champions League blow; Mignolet departure nears; Fabinho discusses challenge
Liverpool are left waiting to see which seed they will be in the Champions League draw
Liverpool will be hoping that PAOK will beat Portuguese side Benfica in their Champions League qualifying play-off as victory for the Greek side will see the Reds through to Pot 2 in the Champions League draw ahead of the Iberian outfit.
The draw will take place in Monaco on August 30, with Liverpool currently the highest ranked team in Pot 3 but behind Benfica, the only remaining Pot 2 team in qualification. It comes after Swiss side FC Basel were shockingly knocked out, allowing Liverpool to take up the spot of first in line to join Pot 2.
Simon Mignolet’s agent has spoken about his future
Simon Mignolet has been strongly linked with a move away from Anfield as he has fallen even further down the pecking order following the arrival of Alisson Becker, and it now seems that he may be third choice on Merseyside. Napoli are the latest club to be linked with a move before the transfer window shuts in Italy on Friday.
“We are in discussions with Napoli, but there is no agreement yet. In the end it is in their interest to find a solution. Liverpool want to keep Simon, but he wants to play in matches – and he should. He deserves to play for a big club. Simon is the best option for Napoli in terms of quality, even though there is a financial aspect to it.”
With time running out, all parties will have to get to work if they are to come to an agreement to allow the Belgian to leave. Much could depend on the future of second choice shotstopper Loris Karius, who has also been linked with an exit.
Fabinho has discussed the challenge of adapting to the Premier League
Summer signing Fabinho was only on the bench for the Reds on Sunday as they overcame West Ham United with a 4-0 win and the Brazilian has discussed the challenge that he faces having joined from Monaco.
“I think my performances have been good. It’s a different playing style than at Monaco; there were two of us in midfield there and here at Liverpool there’s three… I knew [my role] would change and I feel I’ve adapted well. When I came to Liverpool I knew this competition would exist in midfield and I think it’s really good for the team.”
Some fans were not convinced by his pre-season form but it remains early days in his Anfield career with plenty of opportunities ahead to prove himself in a holding midfield role.
One to Watch: Liverpool’s Trent Alexander-Arnold oozes confidence vs West Ham
The 19-year-old picked up exactly where he left off last season.
He simply picked up from where he left season, oozing confidence as he patrolled the right side – camping himself in West Ham’s territory as Liverpool dominated the match.
The Englishman’s exceptional passing ability was the main feature of his performance.
He touched the ball 99 times and completed 58 of his 69 passes, with one delightful line-breaking pass standing out.
This ball, played through to Naby Keita as Liverpool broke forward in the build-up to their first goal, highlighted how dangerous Alexander-Arnold’s passing range when he is given time to raise his eyes and play diagonal balls through midfield.
This diagonal pass split West Ham’s entire midfield open, sending Keita on a burst that culminated in Salah putting the Reds 1-0 ahead.
It was symbolic of the mentality Klopp instils in his players, making them feel confident taking risks to set attacks in motion.
In this instance, the 19-year-old could easily have recycled the ball to a centre-back, but his team were rewarded for his courage in possession.
Defensively, he was also quite active, completing four of his five tackles and making a solitary interception.
Again, having West Ham camped in their own half suited Alexander-Arnold as he was able to press up the pitch and win the ball early in typical Liverpool fashion.
He continues to prove why he is so important to this Liverpool team, and highlights why Nathaniel Clyne cannot get close to first-team football.
Liverpool round-up: Klopp’s West Ham reaction; Klavan bid rejected; Lovren latest
Liverpool opened their Premier League campaign with a record equaling win over West Ham United thanks to goals from Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane twice and Daniel Sturridge. The victory took the team straight to the top of the table with one game played and 37 more to go.
“A very good start, for sure. Yes, it’s a start – perfect as well because we won the game. For us it was not perfect, but really good. West Ham will play for sure a good season, but they are not then the Uniteds, Citys and all that stuff. That’s how it is, they know that and we know that and we have to be ready week in, week out for all the different challenges. Expectation – ours is the highest, but that changes nothing.”
The Reds were dominant up against Mauricio Pellegrini’s Hammers, who were never at the races. Having taken a two goal lead before half-time, Mane added a second before Sturridge scored with his first touch despite coming on as a late substitute.
Newcastle wanted Klavan
News has emerged that the Reds turned down a deadline day bid from Newcastle United for Estonian defender Ragnar Klavan. The report comes from The Chronicle, who say that former Anfield boss Rafa Benitez was keen on the central defender as a cheap option to strengthen his squad.
However, Jurgen Klpop decided that the team could not do without the 32-year-old, who is currently unavailable for selection due to an injury problem. That is despite the fact that his contract is set to expire in 2019, though Klopp has previously said he would like to retain his services.
Lovren set for weeks out
Dejan Lovren returned from the World Cup suffering from a stomach problem and remains sidelined by the issue, as Jurgen Klopp has now confirmed. The German revealed that the Croatian was already struggling towards the end of the season but played through the pain expecting that it would clear up when he had time off after the summer break.
“I am pretty sure it will settle in the next one, two or three weeks. In that time he can probably for sure train already, but not the full programme, so that will then take time. In the end, it is serious but not that serious, so it’s not that we need to be afraid that it will take him until whenever. In the moment he is not available, that’s true.”
However, that has not been the case and the coach has now revealed that he faces one to three weeks on the sidelines with the issue. Joe Gomez excelled in his place on Sunday and looks set to retain that position.
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