Jurgen Klopp will be hard pressed to dramatically improve a Liverpool squad which has gone toe-to-toe with Manchester City at the summit of the Premier League table this season.
However, it is the inability of their title rivals to emulate their supremacy from last season which underlines the importance of strengthening every summer.
Pep Guardiola made just one signing as Riyad Mahrez arrived at the Etihad Stadium in a £60 million deal, ignoring major problem areas such as defensive midfield and left-back, potentially to the detriment of their dream of winning the Champions League for the very first time.
A recent report from Het Nieuwslblad has claimed that Liverpool will not fall into a similar trap as they have already set their sights on Thorgan Hazard, although they face stiff competition from Borussia Dortmund, who the player would prefer to move to.
But what is pertinent to the report is that Liverpool are apparently willing to part with a fee which exceeds the 42 million euros (£36.2 million) Dortmund have already bid.
“I know him very well, his ambition, his passion for the game, his professionalism. I know what he gives to the team and this type of player always interests us. I recognised him when I saw him at Wolves. I saw technique, professionalism; I saw the 2013-14 player I knew.”
While interest in Neves is certainly well placed his reported £100 million price-tag, per The Times, seems a real stretch if Liverpool’s hierarchy are willing to splash out on Hazard, as well as other recruits during the summer.
There is, however, a solution: trust in Harry Wilson instead.
Like Hazard, the 22-year-old has enjoyed huge success this season on both the left and right wing, making defenders look foolish with his tantalising dribbling ability and finding the back of the net on a consistent basis.
The Wales international may not possess the same level of experience as Hazard but the fact he has excelled in two separate loan spells in the Championship suggests everything is in place for him to make the step up to top-flight football.
A transition period is likely to be defined by frustration and inconsistency, but that is a given for any promising flair player looking to showcase their talent at the elite level. And if Klopp is willing to pursue with Wilson it would help facilitate a stunning club-record deal for Neves.
The former Porto star has the potential to blossom into one of the world’s most coveted holding midfielders, making Jordan Henderson look like a Sunday league player with his inventive passing and intelligence both with and without the ball.
At this moment in time Liverpool have plenty of quality central midfield players but Neves would be a progressive one-off transfer splurge to lay a foundation for the next decade, ensuring that Georginio Wijnaldum and Henderson are replaced with a superior orchestrator.
With a player of Wilson’s talent making a strong claim for a place in the senior squad next season and Neves likely to join a European rival if Michael Edwards fails to act in time, Liverpool ought to trust in their academy product to free up enough funds to seal a club-record £100 million swoop.