Emergence of Liverpool in £ 43million transfer lawsuit raises serious defensive injury question
Not happy to have already signed French center-back Ibrahima Konate This summer, recent rumors have surfaced that Liverpool may try to sign Atalanta Argentina center-back Cristian Romero.
Reports in Italy suggest that Jurgen Klopp, aware of the dire situation he faced in defense last season, would like to add another defender, and therefore intends to sign the 23-year-old.
However, is this really the case?
Liverpool have triggered Konate’s release fee this summer – Â£ 36million – to bring the young defender to RB Leipzig’s Anfield. Konate is the 10 e most expensive signature of the FSG era.
Liverpool – like all clubs in the world – has been affected by the global pandemic. The club suffered a pre-tax loss of Â£ 46million through the end of May 2021, but the club is believed to have lost more than Â£ 120million in matchday income since the start of the pandemic.
These losses obviously have a ripple effect in terms of the transfer budget this summer. On top of the money already spent to get Konate signed, can the club really afford to spend the rest of their budget on Romero?
Romero, who is halfway through a two-year loan deal at Atalanta from Juventus, wouldn’t be cheap. The Dea have the right to sign the defender permanently in a year from now, an option they will most likely activate. The robust defender, who has been compared to legendary Juventus defender Paolo Montero, became one of Atalanta’s best players last season, as he ensured Champions League football for the third year in a row .
Last season’s horrific streak of central defense injuries hampered the Reds’ inclination to retain their Premier League crown. Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez all suffered late-season injuries early in the campaign. This forced Klopp to field Fabinho and Jordan Henderson in defense on occasion, and later recent graduates such as Rhys Williams and Nathaniel Phillips.
Turkish defender Ozan Kabak was loaned out out of sheer desperation during Schalke’s winter transfer window. Kabak then suffered two injuries during his six months on Merseyside, missing games in stride. Liverpool refused to sign him permanently and returned to the sender.
Van Dijk, Gomez and Matip will all come back from injury before next season. Along with the signing of Konate and young Williams and Phillips, Klopp is expected to have enough center-backs to get through the season.
Still, it must be said that Konate’s injury record isn’t a great read either: he missed much of last season with a bevy of different injuries, meaning he didn’t. only played 14 times for Leipzig. It doesn’t inspire confidence until 2021/22 considering Liverpool’s recent record.
In theoretical terms, Romero’s signing makes a lot of sense: Liverpool are buying an aggressive and fast defender, young but already very experienced, and would compliment van Dijk’s return to the heart of the defense. Yet when you weigh all the issues: the expense of signing the player; declining transfer budget; the return of Gomez and Matip; the signing of Konate and the recent graduates of Williams and Phillips, this move also doesn’t make sense, oddly enough.
Klopp should prioritize other areas of the pitch and focus less on securing another center-back.