According to O Jogo, Liverpool would be interested in signing Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves, who has shone in patches during the Molineux outfit’s return season in the Premier League.
But the Portugal international could set them back a staggering £110million according to reports from September and Liverpool already have a wealth of options in central midfield, few of whom – much like Neves – offer a consistent supply of creativity and goals.
So, should Liverpool swoop for Neves at the campaign’s end? Football FanCast’s writers give their verdicts below…
“I think Neves is just what Liverpool are missing in the midfield. Admittedly, they have a lot of options already, but the Portuguese midfielder is a general in the middle of the park and a man capable of dictating things from deep. He is also used to hitting long-range passes to speedy attackers at Wolves, so he wouldn’t need much time to adapt at Anfield as Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane would make life easy for him.”
“Liverpool already have a plethora of midfielders who are decent defensively – Georginio Wijnaldum, James Milner, Jordan Henderson, Fabinho and Naby Keita – but don’t offer enough going forward, and Neves hardly breaks that mould. Yes, he is capable of getting up and down the pitch, dictating the play from deep and scoring the odd brilliant goal, but he hasn’t shown that he has that creative brain in the centre that the Reds are crying out for next season. In truth, he’s no better than Wijnaldum. Maybe in another year’s time a move could happen, but he isn’t ready yet.”
“With Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain coming back, Jurgen Klopp now has two options in each of this 3 midfield positions. The “6” can be occupied by Henderson or Fabinho, both of whom can also fill the box-to-box role usually occupied by Wijnaldum or Milner, while Oxwlade-Chamberlain will return to compete with Keita for the most advanced midfield spot. There is simply no room for a big money signing who will expect to play week in week out.”
“I can’t see why Klopp would be interested in a move for Neves. Liverpool’s squad is stacked with quality options in central midfield and Neves’ influence has diminished as the season has developed. The early season hype was thoroughly justified but he has been overshadowed by the brilliance of Joao Moutinho. That in itself is enough to suggest Neves could damage his career by trying to play his way into an incredibly competitive midfield unit – just look at Keita.”