According to the Italian news outlet La Gazzetta Dello Sport (via Paisley Gates), Liverpool have been looking at AC Milan’s Ismael Bennacer for some time.
As per the report, Liverpool are exploring the option of making a move for the midfielder over the remaining days of the transfer window and despite Milan not being keen to let go of one of their key players, Bennacer has a £42m release clause in his contract.
Liverpool have had their worst start to a Premier League season in a decade, becoming one of just five clubs that have failed to register a single win in their first three league games following a humiliating defeat to Manchester United on Monday night.
The glaringly obvious problem in the team is the current midfield injury crisis with Thiago Alcantara, Curtis Jones, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and now Naby Keita all side-lined with various issues.
With only James Milner, Jordan Henderson, Fabinho and Harvey Elliott left available for selection, there is no doubt that the powers at Anfield must address these issues with a new signing in the centre of the pitch to not only cover for injuries but to improve upon those currently available to select.
It is no secret that the Merseysiders had every intention of adding a fresh perspective into their midfield this summer after Aurelien Tchouameni agreed personal terms with the club ahead of the Champions League final at the end of last season.
However, it wasn’t meant to be and Tchouameni made a move to Real Madrid instead but now Jurgen Klopp can make up for the disappointment by signing Bennacer, as he is the perfect alternative for the midfielder who rejected a move to Merseyside.
According to FBref, the newly-signed Real Madrid youngster was the second most comparable player to Bennacer over the last 12 months, with the pair offering many similarities in their style of play in the centre of the pitch.
The two attacking-minded midfielders came close in their pass completion rates (86.9% v 86.5%), success rate in pressures (32.4% v 35.8%) and received passes (91.7% v 94.3%), as per FBref, proving that the signing of Bennacer could be a great fit for the profile of player they were already keen to sign.
Bennacer who was hailed “complete” by manager Stefano Pioli ranks in the top 1% of his positional peers across the top five European leagues for dribbles completed, as well as ranking in the top 10% for progressive passes and interceptions, displaying consistency in his attributes which is something that Liverpool are crying out for.
With that being said, the signing of the AC Milan gem could be a major coup for the Reds in their pursuit to regain their form and kickstart their challenge for more trophies, but FSG must act fast with only eight days left to seal a deal before the transfer window slams shut next Thursday.