In pictures: Norwich v Liverpool
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Liverpool’s transfer shortlist has been dealt a blow, with Harvey Barnes reportedly on the verge of signing a lucrative new deal with Leicester. Thankfully for Jurgen Klopp, there are four others with admirers at Anfield who could be brought to the negotiating table before the end of the month.
It has been a strangely quiet summer for Liverpool, with Ibrahima Konate the only major signing to date.
The Frenchman’s £36million transfer from RB Leipzig was sewn up all the way back in May, and nothing has materialised since.
A midfielder was certainly expected by now, given fan-favourite Gini Wijnaldum departed for PSG earlier in the summer.
Two of their initial five-man shortlist were indeed midfielders, according to Goal, with Yves Bissouma and Florian Neuhaus given a realistic chance of linking up with Klopp this month.
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All others are in attack, however, where competition for an ageing frontline has been deemed important ahead of a demanding season.
The report cites West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen, Wolves’ Pedro Neto and of course Barnes as the trio of candidates to fill that vacancy.
However, with Barnes’ future set for the Midlands, at least for another few years, Liverpool’s shortlist is seemingly reduced to four.
The Athletic claim that Barnes’ scintillating performances are set to be rewarded with a ‘vastly improved’ deal at the King Power Stadium.
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His pace, directness and 13-goal haul in all competitions last campaign have certainly earned him plenty of admirers in various corners of the Premier League.
Klopp himself spoke about his attitude towards transfers earlier in pre-season: “I am very happy with the squad, but it doesn’t mean that we don’t look at the market.
“But as long as nothing happens, I am more than happy with the squad I have.
“You cannot sign our counter-pressing, you cannot sign our atmosphere that we create in the stadium, you cannot sign Anfield, you cannot sign our anthem.
“Our situation is like it is. We have a big squad and there might be something happening until the end of the transfer window, but I cannot say anything about that at the moment.”
With arrivals supposedly in the pipeline, departures have naturally been rumoured, with Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi reportedly the most likely candidates to make way in the next couple of weeks.
Their respective exits would clear a space for the likes of Bowen, who would arrive with the aim of posing a sterner test to Liverpool’s established attacking order.
Clearly, many signings are possible before the window slams shut, but Klopp seems relaxed even if they must press on with what they have.
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