For Liverpool fans the Premier League crown remains their most sought-after trophy but under the stewardship of Jurgen Klopp there is a real sense that the club can finally add the elusive piece of silverware to their trophy cabinet.
The German boss has kicked off his summer recruitment drive in decent fashion by signing Naby Keita from Red Bull Leipzig and Fabinho from Monaco, with more signings expected to arrive before the big kick-off in August.
Several positions remain problematic for the Reds and if they are serious about toppling current champions Manchester City next season they must ensure that the right players are added to the squad this summer.
Reaching the Champions League final at the end of last season does make Liverpool a pretty big attraction for any potential recruits during the transfer window and Klopp will be hoping to get the signatures of some more stellar players.
Here, we look at three players that Liverpool must sign to enhance their title credentials…
The England central defender has seen his stock rise no end after a magnificent World Cup where his performances have helped his country to the last four of the tournament.
Leicester City will face a real fight to keep hold of the no-nonsense defender following the competition and it remains to be seen whether one of the top clubs can entice him out of the King Power Stadium.
Reports in the Liverpool Echo last week claimed that ex-Reds’ defender Phil Thompson has urged his former club to sign the Leicester man following his scintillating tournament, and it now remains to be seen whether an advance will be made after the World Cup.
The signing of a world class goalkeeper remains the primary target for Liverpool this summer, particularly following Loris Karius’ high profile mistakes in the Champions League final at the end of May.
Oblak has established himself as one of the world’s very best goalkeepers during his four years with Atlético Madrid and the Slovenian international would represent a major summer coup for Liverpool, if a deal can be struck.
Tempting the 25-year-old away from the Wanda Metropolitano might prove tricky but it certainly wouldn’t hurt for the Reds to try and aim high in their quest for a new custodian.
The 25-year-old was one of the Premier League’s standout performers last season and he has really revived his career under Roy Hodgson’s management at Crystal Palace.
Zaha’s pace would be a serious attribute in Liverpool’s high pressing style of football and his arrival would signify a solid statement of intent by the Reds.
Three reasons Danny Ward’s Leicester City move makes perfect sense
The Welshman looks set to move to the King Power.
The transfer makes sense for both parties, after Liverpool added goalkeeping talent that would have restricted Ward’s opportunities even more.
Here are three reasons why the switch is a smart one for the Welshman.
Alisson’s arrival extinguished Ward’s Liverpool hopes
Liverpool completed the signing of Roma goalkeeper Alisson after a prolonged transfer saga, which pushed Ward even further down the pecking order at Anfield.
Since joining in 2012, the Welsh international has made a grand total of three first team appearances for the Reds. The lack of minutes meant it was time for Ward to move on, and the addition of one of the best goalkeepers in the world confirmed that decision.
Ward will enjoy increased playing time
In Percy’s tweet announcing the deal between the two clubs, he claimed Ward was being brought in to compete with Kasper Schmeichel, not to be a replacement.
Nevertheless, if Schmeichel stays Ward would still have the opportunity to play consistent football in cup competitions, which is much more than he enjoyed at Anfield.
The Welsh number one spot could soon be his
With a smart move to the King Power Stadium, Ward could possibly claim the Leicester number one role. And with positive performances, he could add to his four Wales caps and make a case to become the Welsh number one.
At only 25 years of age, he has plenty of time to ignite his international career, and at the perfect time due to the expanded Euro and World Cup fields.
Three goalkeepers Leicester should target if Kasper Schmeichel leaves
Chelsea are keen to sign Kasper Schmeichel, which would leave Leicester in need of a replacement.
Sky Sports state the Denmark international is a target for new Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri amidst continued speculation that Thibaut Courtois is off to Real Madrid – a transfer that now seems increasingly likely to go ahead.
After featuring for his nation at the World Cup, speculation suggesting 31-year-old Schmeichel will seek a new challenge for the 2018/19 season has been growing, with Sky Sports previously reporting the Premier League winner is also a target for Roma.
If Schmeichel is to leave, then Leicester boss Claude Puel must invest funds on a new goalkeeper in the market and these three options would be tremendous signings.
“Those Champions league nights are special. There is something about the night games, going away to different cities, it makes it unique.”
England international Jack Butland may not have been first-choice for Gareth Southgate during the club’s tremendous run to the World Cup semi-finals but a major transfer could be on the cards before the window shuts.
Stoke City‘s relegation means that Butland will find it difficult to fight for a spot in the national side next season if he remains in the second-tier and Leicester would be the ideal surroundings for the 25-year-old, though a stern fight may emerge for his services.
The Sun reported Chelsea’s interest earlier this month but the Blues pursuit of Schmeichel suggests that their targets have changed, while the Mirror has thrown doubt on Liverpool‘s reported interest as Jurgan Klopp is content with the goalkeeping options he has at Anfield.
Boasting vast experience at international level, after starring for Colombia in the previous two World Cups, David Ospina also possesses Premier League and European experience – all of which would encourage Leicester to make a move.
Arsenal are ready to approve a departure following their capture of Germany international Bernd Leno and the Mirror states that the Gunners will accept a fee of just £6 million for the 29-year-old due to the fact he has entered the final 12 months of his contract.
Boca Juniors are also in the hunt for Ospina’s services but the player’s agent told El Crack Deportivo that a move to South America would be difficult to materialise and his preference is to remain in European football.
Prior to the World Cup, Cho Hyun-Woo told ESPN that he dreams of playing in England and the performances of the South Korea goalkeeper in Russia have increased the possibility of that becoming a reality.
The 26-year-old starred for his nation in a difficult group alongside Mexico, Sweden and Germany but stunned the latter with a shock victory that saw the defending champions knocked out prematurely, with Hyun-Woo capturing plenty of attention for a number of superb stops.
An advisor of Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp told Dagbladet that the Reds should secure a move for the Daegu FC player and Leicester should be alerted as a result, as he could prove to be a superb acquisition.
Leicester City would be in dreamland with reported Ahmed Musa windfall
Ahmed Musa has struggled at Leicester City but thrived for his country.
Nigeria fell agonisingly short of knocking Argentina out of the World Cup this summer and many of their players impressed fans with their displays. One player who caught the eye was well-known to fans of one Premier League club. Leicester City forward Ahmed Musa was brilliant for Nigeria in Russia.
Such form has now seen him linked with plenty of moves away from the King Power. The latest reports involved Saudi Arabian outfit Al Nassr. They are seemingly ready to pay a whopping £30 million for the player, as reported by Nigerian source Own Goal Nigeria.
That fee has now been skewed in other reports, with the Leicester Mercury reporting the fee at £40 million. That fee has also been suggested by Score Nigeria earlier this month whilst the Daily Trust also report the news with that fee attached.
So there is clearly some disparity between the reports.
But at £30 or £40 million this would be great business for Leicester.
Signed for just £16 million in the summer of 2016, the Nigerian managed just five goals in 33 games for the Foxes before being loaned back to CSKA last winter.
Leicester would, therefore, stand to make £24 million if the £40 million assessments are correct. If not, then £14 million would not be bad either.
He would also be sold to a nation where his form would be out of sight and out of mind. Leicester are unlikely to feel any repercussions personally if he is sent to Dubai. If he scores a litany of goals? Then people will just criticise the standard of football.
At £30 million it is a magnificent deal for Leicester. At £40 million, they are in dreamland.