For all of Liverpool’s great attacking play, they do have an alarming weakness – and it’s a significant one – defending. The Reds frailties at the back were for all to see on the opening weekend of the Premier League against Arsenal as they raced into a stunning 4-1 lead before almost throwing the game away.
The saying ‘snatching defeat from the jaws of victory’ has been apt for a lot of the Reds’ performances in recent memory and that is something Jurgen Klopp needs to stamp out. The German has bought defensive reinforcements in the form of Joel Matip and Loris Karius but could really do with a midfielder that can defend as well as attack.
It looked as though Gary Medel was going to be that man but reportedly a bid was rejected by Inter Milan for the Chilean leaving Liverpool to reassess their options.
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So in the 7 Of The Best spirit, here are SEVEN Gary Medel alternatives for Klopp to look at…
Liverpool certainly seem interested in Dahoud and have seen a bid rejected for him turned down according to The Sun. The young German has a lot expected of him but does not seem too bothered by it in the centre of midfield as his performances have far exceeded what someone of his age should be doing. Monchengladbach look determined to keep hold of him so the Reds will have to carefully plan their next bid.
Verratti is a real fighter in the centre of the pitch despite his slight frame. The young Italian gets around the playing surface with ease and would give the Reds some much needed bite in the midfield battle. His disciplinary record could be improved but at 23 there’s time for him to bring that control into his game and whilst it might cost good money to take him from PSG, he’d be worth it.
Meyer ticks a lot of boxes for what Liverpool look for in a player. He’s young but he’s shown he’s more than capable of playing at the top level for Schalke and also has a full German international cap under his belt. He’s a slightly more creative force than Medel but can still handle himself on the pitch whilst his ability to carry the ball would ensure the Reds’ transitions from defence to attack are rapid.
Saponara is a very industrious player like Medel but carries a far bigger goal-threat with twelve goals in 49 games for Empoli. At 24-years-old the next few years are vital in his career and Jurgen Klopp might feel it’s time to take a punt on a player that would carry a small fee yet can play in a number of positions in midfield. At over six foot he’s a physical presence too and Liverpool need that.
Weigl is a new type of deep lying midfielder that will only become more popular in the next few years. Whereas most holding players are expected to just break attacks up and play it simply the young German can dictate the tempo of the game. He’s seen by Dortmund as the natural successor to the departed Ilkay Gundogan so for the Reds to sign him they’ll need deep pockets.
Malaga’s Camacho has been a permanent fixture in their side since 2011 because he knows exactly how to carry out his job well. The one time Spanish international has twelve goals to his name with his current club so whilst he doesn’t score loads he lets the rest of his team play as he holds the fort. Balance between attack and defence is exactly what Liverpool need and Camacho would provide it.
Liverpool have been linked with the Porto star but as yet no more has come of it. He’s only 19 but no-one gets near him in terms of taking his position for the Portuguese side and it won’t be long until he’s a permanent part of the Portugal national team. He has two senior caps to his name already and as the European Champions usher in a new era he’s sure to make many more.