Double Klopp disaster with top Liverpool performer in shock exit link and Tottenham threatening perfect midfielder chase
A rare Liverpool performer whose levels haven’t dipped this season is being linked with a move to a Champions League contender, while Tottenham have muscled in on a potential Reds arrival, per a report.
Liverpool’s season has lurched from one disappointment to another thus far. The Champions League represents their last chance of silverware (other than the Community Shield). However, reversing a three-goal deficit against Real Madrid on enemy territory at the Bernabeu is a near-impossible task.
Simply qualifying for next season’s Champions League is also looking unlikely. The Reds currently sit nine points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, though do have two games in hand.
Liverpool’s midfield has come in for stinging criticism this term, while Jurgen Klop has repeatedly bemoaned the drop in intensity as well as how easy his side are to play through.
A midfield overhaul is expected in the summer, with the Mirror recently naming five current midfielders likely to make way.
One player not named by the Mirror was Thiago Alcantara. Along with 18-year-old Stefan Bajcetic, the pair are Klopp’s only midfielders who’ve played anywhere close to the level Liverpool require this season.
However, according to Italian outlet Calciomercato, Thiago has emerged as a transfer target for AC Milan.
Could Thiago be among midfield casualties?
The classy Spaniard, 31, will see his Reds contract expire in the summer of 2024. As such, and if Liverpool don’t intend to offer fresh terms, a sale this summer would make sense.
However, given Thiago is one of very few players to have played well this season and is not showing his age, losing him would be nothing short of disastrous.
Calcio state Liverpool intend to re-shape their midfield and Thiago could be among the casualties. He reportedly appeals to AC Milan who unlike Liverpool, are on course to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Little else is noted about a potential Thiago move, indicating any deal is very much in its infancy at present. There’s also no indication Liverpool want to sell or Thiago wants out.
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Tottenham enter Liverpool chase for Barella
Elsewhere, the same Calcio report provides an update on the future of Liverpool target Nicolo Barella.
If Jurgen Klopp could design the perfect midfielder for his system, the 26-year-old Inter Milan ace would result.
Barella boasts an incredible engine and is just as effective going forward as he is in his own half. His energy and willingness to press looks tailor-made for a Klopp midfield.
The Reds have stepped up their scouting efforts on Barella in 2023. What’s more, Corriere dello Sport recently confirmed Inter need to raise around €60m before June 30 to help conform with Financial Fair Play.
A Barella sale – potentially for a fee in the region of €70m-€80m (approx. £61.7m-£70.5m) – would solve Inter’s issues in one fell swoop.
However, per Calcio, in the event Inter do give the greenlight to a Barella exit, Tottenham will be in the mix.
Barella is well known to current Spurs boss Antonio Conte through their time at the San Siro.
The Italy international has proven himself a world class operator in a Conte team in the past and the lure of a reunion could appeal.
Calcio term the situation as Barella being ‘in the crosshairs’ of Tottenham if Inter decide to cash in.
If Liverpool are to sign the all-action midfielder, a deal may have to go through Spurs.
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