After coming up short in the Capital One Cup final and seemingly destined to miss out on a top four spot in the Premier League this season, major changes are expected at Liverpool during the summer transfer window.
That’s in no small part due to the presence of Jurgen Klopp who, after replacing Brendan Rodgers in the Anfield hot seat in October, is still yet to truly stamp his mark on the current Reds squad.
New signings are expected – in fact, one has already been secured in Bosman acquisition Joel Matip – which inevitably means there will be a host of summer departures to make room for Klopp’s fresh recruits.
So with the summer transfer window by no means as far away as it may seem – just three months to be precise – Football Fancast have been running the rule over FIVE Liverpool stars who look set to be handed their P45s.
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Despite an initial uplift in form following Jurgen Klopp’s appointment, producing decent performances in auxiliary competitions and netting in back-to-back fixtures against Arsenal and Exeter, the end still appears nigh for Joe Allen.
The ‘Welsh Xavi’ has never quite turned up at Anfield and now four seasons on from his summer 2012 arrival, the notably passive midfielder is unlikely to ever reach the levels once heralded with the Merseysiders.
Furthermore, his contract will enter its final twelve months in the summer, making the coming transfer window Liverpool’s best chance to recoup some of their original £15million investment.
Christian Benteke is a talented striker who joined the wrong club at the worst possible time. From Emile Heskey to Andy Carroll, Liverpool and target men have never quite worked out and the appointment of Jurgen Klopp appears to have already ended the Belgium international’s chances of bucking the trend.
Indeed, Benteke has registered just two more Premier League starts than he managed under Brendan Rodgers since the German gaffer took the Helm in October, with Daniel Sturridge, Roberto Firmino and even youngster Divock Origi above him in the pecking order.
Klopp clearly deems the 25-year-old’s style as incompatible with his own philosophy. But well-proven in the Premier League from his 49-goal spell with Aston Villa, plenty of English clubs will be happy to take Benteke off Liverpool’s hands this summer.
Kolo Toure has probably exceeded the expectations of many since moving to Anfield in summer 2013. The veteran defender has gone on to register 62 appearances across all competitions and put in some really impressive displays – Liverpool’s rearguard performance against Real Madrid at the Bernabeu particularly coming to mind.
But the experienced Ivorian’s contract is set to expire in the summer and it seems unlikely he’ll be offered a new deal, especially after Klopp elected to start defensive midfielder Lucas Leiva at the heart of defence over him in the Capital One Cup final last Sunday.
Likewise, Liverpool have already secured one centre-back addition in Bosman signing Joel Matip and will be expected to make at least one more during the summer transfer window.
In theory, Alberto Moreno is an ideal left-back for Jurgen Klopp, who likes is full-backs to push forward and contribute heavily on the ball.
But the Spain international just hasn’t progressed as expected since signing from Sevilla in summer 2014 and his defensive weaknesses continue to create serious problems for an already shaky Liverpool backline.
Even Brendan Rodgers preferred the inexperienced Joe Gomez at the start of the season and Moreno seems unlikely to earn a contract extension beyond 2019, so if Liverpool receive a half-decent bid this summer the chances are that it’ll be accepted.
Then again, Liverpool will need a replacement lined up first and the failure to source one could delay the 23-year-old’s departure until the end of next season.
The fate of Simon Mignolet is probably the biggest question facing Liverpool ahead of the summer transfer window.
The Reds issued their hap-hazard No.1 a five-year contract extension earlier this season but most believe that was a measure to protect his value rather than ensure a long-term stay on Merseyside.
Indeed, Klopp has never been close to dropping Mignolet but the Capital One Cup final performance summed his Reds’ career up – a few moments of brilliance undone by an avoidable error that inevitably gave Liverpool too much to do.
The Merseysiders need a top-class goalkeeper if they’re seriously going to challenge for a Champions League spot next term and the 27-year-old is somewhat short of that calibre.