Liverpool: The first six fixtures of the new Premier League season
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It has been a fairly subdued summer transfer window for Liverpool so far, but all of that could be about to change with things picking up pace as Euro 2020 nears its conclusion. Transfers have been held up by tournament, with players otherwise engaged, but it seems that the logjam could be about to shift.
Liverpool have already completed one piece of business by signing Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig and one other big transfer has also gone through, with Manchester United finally landing long-term target Jadon Sancho.
United have agreed a deal in principle to pay Borussia Dortmund £73million for the England winger, who will have his medical after Sunday’s Euro 2020 final against Italy at Wembley.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have courted Sancho for some time and his arrival at Old Trafford will come as a surprise to nobody.
Transfers often come in bursts, with a big move like Sancho’s triggering a domino effect down the food chain.
Dortmund will understandably be on the lookout for a replacement, having sold one of their most prized assets. With a move to United on the cards for at least a year, you can bet the German club will have a long list of names already drawn up.
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BVB have a proud history of shrewd work in the transfer market. You only have to look at Robert Lewandowski, Ousmane Dembele, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and countless others to see their strategy.
Their track record, built up over a sustained period of time, suggests that whoever Dortmund are looking at as a replacement for Sancho might be a good target for other clubs.
Enter Liverpool, who could really do with some further back-up for the tried and tested attacking triumvirate of Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah.
Diogo Jota has proven to be an excellent option following his £45m move from Wolves last year, but last season showed the depth beyond him isn’t there yet.
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Adam Lallana’s move to Brighton and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s fitness issues have left Jurgen Klopp with the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi on the substitutes’ bench.
Over a long, arduous season Klopp could really do with reinforcements in attacking positions.
This is where Donyell Malen comes in. The 22-year-old winger bagged 27 goals and 10 assists for PSV Eindhoven last season and impressed with two assists for the Netherlands at Euro 2020.
While he generally played as a central forward for PSV in 2020/21, he is capable of playing on either flank and has the all-round skill set which would appear a good fit for Liverpool.
The problem is, Malen is represented by super agent Mino Raiola, who is understandably driving a hard bargain for his client this summer.
According to reports in the Netherlands, Liverpool have made contact with Malen’s camp over a possible transfer.
However, Eindhovens Dagblad reports that he is yet to make his mind up on a transfer, with Dortmund another strong option.
Bild reports that Malen is seen as the strongest candidate to replace Sancho. The only sticking point is money, with Raiola hoping to triple his client’s current wages of £1.7m (€2m) per year and PSV asking for more than £25.7m (€30m) as a transfer fee.
There is clearly some gamesmanship going on here and Raiola is one of the masters of the transfer system. He will always drive a hard bargain.
But £25m for an established, yet young and exciting international is not a bad deal in today’s inflated market.
Liverpool have already solved their defensive issues by signing Konate for £30.5m.
Malen appears to be a good investment to help ease the burden on their attacking trio. The Reds’ hierarchy may just have to move fast in order to pip Dortmund to his signature.
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