Choo, choo… the Southampton to Liverpool Express may well be back on the tracks, and the latest name supposedly heading to the North West from the South Coast is Nathaniel Clyne.
Reports suggest that the Reds are ready to up their offer for the England international after seeing an opening £10m bid knocked back, and they could get their man with the Saints aware that selling now – his contract expires in 12 months’ time – is, perhaps, the most sensible option.
Although he’s one of the Premier League’s standout right-backs and a Three Lions star, there may actually be better options out there for Liverpool than Clyne – just look at the level of success Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert and Dejan Lovren have brought since their moves from St Mary’s Stadium last summer!
So with that in mind, here are FIVE alternatives for the Merseysiders…
Even though reports suggest that Spurs are closing in on the Burnley ace, Liverpool are understood to have an interest in him, and until the ink is dry on a contract, he’s still up for grabs. Although, arguably, not as exciting a prospect at Clyne, Trippier would cost a fraction of the fee, due to his £3.5m release clause, needed, and does appear to be a solid option.
During the Clarets’ promotion campaign in 2013/14, the 24-year-old registered a whopping 14 assists, many of which were whipped crosses for Danny Ings, who is set to be a Red by the start of next month. Food for thought…
Perhaps the standout candidate among the fans, Montoya’s name has been aligned with Liverpool for much of the past few years, but now speculation that he could make the move to Anfield has gathered serious momentum. Montoya has struggled for game time at Barca and with Dani Alves staying put, perhaps now is the time to leave, and Liverpool are thought to be eyeing a £7.3m raid.
An attacking threat with energy and impeccable technique – he’s been schooled by the Catalan giants – he would appear to be a good fit on Merseyside, even if he may take some persuading due to a lack of Champions League football.
Wanted by Bayern Munich, Arsenal and Manchester United, Darmian may prove to be beyond Liverpool’s reach this summer, but anything is possible in the beautiful game. Torino’s impressive Italy international is able to play on either side of the backline – albeit the right flank is his preference – while he’s also capable of operating as a wing-back ahead of a three-man rearguard, which could tempt Brendan Rodgers.
This one may be a speculative link as things stand, but with Real Madrid having clinched the signing of Danilo from Porto, Carvajal’s place in the Spanish capital is under genuine threat. The impressive full-back has been back with his boyhood club since 2013, he was signed from Bayer Leverkusen, and impressed as Los Blancos clinched the Champions League trophy in 2014.
Capable at both ends of the pitch and not afraid to get involved in a tussle, Carvajal could be a great option if the Reds are able to lure him to England.
An intriguing outside option is Wisdom. The powerful defender has returned to Merseyside following two seasons on loan – he spent 2013/14 with Derby and played out the campaign just gone at West Brom – and with a new contract penned, he appears to be in Rodgers’ plans. The 22-year-old featured regularly in the Northern Irishman’s first term at Anfield, and with experience under his belt he could now be ready to step up to a first choice role. Although prone to defensive lapses, Wisdom is strong, pacey and remarkably adept on the ball considering his size and build.