The January transfer window is well underway and rumours are flying around Football FanCast Towers thick and fast at the moment.
So thick and fast, in fact, that we’re struggling to keep track of them all. You probably are too, so we thought it would be a good idea to start compiling the rumours surrounding the Premier League’s top clubs into one place – organised in an easily digestible Three In, Three Out format.
This article focuses on Liverpool, who have already made one signing this month in the form of highly-rated Serbia U21 international Marko Grujic.
But with Jurgen Klopp yet to truly imprint his own philosophy onto the Anfield squad and the club’s injury crisis ever-worsening, we could see further deals take place on Merseyside before the winter window slams shut.
Likewise, there are a handful issues to attend to on the outward front as well. So with that in mind, here’s Liverpool’s Three In, Three out for the January transfer window…
Although Liverpool are a little light in the left-back department, with summer signing Joe Gomez ruled out for the rest of the season through injury, you can’t imagine the club putting up much resistance to bids for Jose Enrique this month.
Indeed, a combination of recurring injures and underwhelming form has seen the Spaniard make just 18 appearances over the last two-and-a-half campaigns and he’s yet to feature in any competition so far this season – although rumour has it the 29-year-old will be utilised as a makeshift centre-back against Exeter this weekend.
With his Anfield contract set to expire in the summer, practically any bid is likely to be accepted by the Merseyside outfit this month. Potential suitors, however, are thus far few and far between.
Rumour has it Liverpool are considering a club-record bid for Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Granit Xhaka.
The Switzerland international, who featured prominently for his country at the 2014 World Cup, has been in good form this season, bagging three goals in 15 Bundesliga appearances whilst averaging 2.3 tackles, 3.1 interceptions and 81 passes per match.
The Reds lack a deep-lying playmaker of the 23-year-old’s description and he’s reportedly rated by Jurgen Klopp, who will be well aware of his rapid development in the Bundesliga since leaving FC Basel in summer 2012.
Xhaka’s father has refused to rule out a move this month, but convincing Gladbach to sell could well require a £37million bid.
It seems inevitable Joe Allen’s rather underwhelming Liverpool tenure will come to an end at some point over the next few transfer windows.
The 25-year-old has never come close to living up to his reputation as ‘the Welsh Xavi’ and he looks set to record his lowest appearance haul to date this season, thus far receiving just one start and five outings from the bench in the Premier League.
Furthermore, the Wales international’s contract expires in summer 2017, meaning the Reds are running out of time to recoup as much of their £15million investment as possible.
Although Jurgen Klopp won’t be actively looking to ‘cash in’ on Allen this month, a decent bid could well tempt the club to sell. There isn’t too much speculation on that front at the moment – but a return to relegation-threatened Swansea City could be on the cards.
With the Reds so desperate for defensive reinforcements that they’ve recalled Tiago Ilori from his anonymous season-long loan at Aston Villa, adding another centre-half to the Anfield squad will surely be one of Jurgen Klopp’s priorities this month.
In that regard, it’s hard to look past old ally Neven Subotic, who not only served under the German gaffer during his two title-winning campaigns at Borussia Dortmund but also at former club Mainz – arriving together at Westfalenstadion in 2008.
Despite spending his Dortmund career in the shadow of World Cup-winning centre-back partner Mats Hummels, the 27-year-old is a talented defender in his own right; famed for his exceptional reading of the game, quality in possession and penchant for last-ditch tackles.
Having slumped down the pecking order somewhat since the summer appointment of Thomas Tuchel, Subotic has been linked with a Merseyside switch continually since Klopp took the Anfield helm.
The latest rumours claim Liverpool are already in talks over a loan move until the end of the season.
Jerome Sinclair is one of Liverpool’s most highly-rated youngsters and is currently the youngest debutant in the club’s history, having first featured for the Reds as a 16-year-old in the Capital One Cup during the 2012/13 season.
But the striker’s Anfield future remains in serious doubt. Negotiations to extend his contract past the end of the season have worryingly stalled and perhaps most tellingly of all, Sinclair has just switched agents to Aidy Ward – the controversial representative who facilitated Raheem Sterling’s summer move to Manchester City.
Intriguingly, the Citizens have been mooted to try and take the 19-year-old off Liverpool’s hands as well. Although a summer switch seems somewhat more likely, Liverpool, City or both may have an interest in agreeing a deal this month instead – rather than letting Sinclair’s compensation fee be decided by a tribunal.
Another centre-back – and indeed, another Bundesliga star – believed to be on the Anfield radar is Schalke’s Joel Matip.
The versatile Cameroon international has spent much of his Miners career jostling between the backline and midfield but he’s found prominent form operating exclusively as a central defender this season, averaging 1.5 tackles, 3.3 interceptions, 4.8 clearances and 3.6 successful aerial duels per match.
Athletic, decent on the ball, versatile and relatively young at the age of 24, Matip has plenty to offer a top-end club like Liverpool. Furthermore, his contract is set to expire at the end of the season and a new deal is increasingly unlikely, meaning the Miners could be forced to cash in this month.
A £10million fee would certainly be in the right ballpark for the January transfer window. But now free to discuss pre-contract terms over a bosman move with foreign clubs, the Reds might opt for a summer swoop instead.