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Liverpool plotting move for Mikel Merino

Liverpool are plotting a summer move for Real Sociedad midfielder Mikel Merino this summer who could be available for £45m.

What’s the story?

According to reports in Spain, the Reds could revive their pursuit of the Spanish star after previously registering interest in the winter market.

Klopp wants to sign a ‘top class’ central midfielder this summer and there is a lot of speculation about who that might be. Whilst many stand out names have been mentioned, considering a player like Merino may be worth it.

The player is valued at a mouthwatering £45m by Transfermarkt.

He’s better than Henderson

Not only would he be available at a cheaper price than others, he has Premier League experience as well. He spent a season on loan at Newcastle United before being bought by the Magpies for £6.3m.

At the time his capture was described as “obscenely good” by journalist Simon Harrison, but he was sold in the same transfer window. He was also described as “more mobile and more dynamic.” than Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso by his then manager Rafael Benítez.

Do you want to see Merino at Liverpool?

Of course!

Of course!

No way!

No way!

Perhaps he’s one that got away for the Toon, but it could play to Liverpool’s advantage nicely. His time on Tyneside wasn’t exceptional but he was only 21-years old and has since improved.

Although in a recent interview he admits that he “still gets goosebumps” thinking about the crowd at St James’ Park, therefore just imagine what he would feel in front of the Anfield faithful.

The Spaniard has made 27 league appearances for Real Sociedad this season and has seven goal contributions to his name.

What’s more impressive are his stats on the ball, he is in the top 7% in Europe’s top five leagues compared to players in his position for passes under pressure and touches in the opposing penalty area.

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Alberto Moreno celebrates

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To get a feel for how well he would do in a Liverpool shirt we compared him to captain and star midfielder for the Reds Jordan Henderson.

Merino has a higher expected goals and assists per 90 minutes this season at 0.27 compared to the Reds skipper’s 0.21.

He also beats Henderson in some defensive areas, including having tackled a higher percentage of dribblers at 38% compared to 28%.

And at just 25-years-old he has his best years ahead of him. Klopp could go for a more complete midfielder who is perhaps already world-class, but it would cost more and leave him with less money to spend elsewhere.

He has a proven record of turning good players into the best players and he could do the same with Merino.

IN other news: Sources: Liverpool now set to sign “generational” ace, he’s more exciting than Carvalho…

Article title: Liverpool plotting move for Mikel Merino

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