Jurgen Klopp admits Liverpool are in ‘a difficult period’ after Napoli humbling
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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp could decide to cut short Arthur Melo’s season-long loan spell at Anfield when the January transfer window rolls around, according to reports. The Reds signed Arthur from Juventus on deadline day to provide some additional cover in the middle of the park, with a number of their existing stars having been hit with injuries since the beginning of the campaign.
Arthur has struggled for regular game time at Liverpool, though, with the Brazilian playmaker making a 13-minute cameo in their Champions League defeat to Napoli before being left on the bench for the victory over Ajax on Tuesday evening. It seems as though Klopp has already seen enough of Arthur, who could be sent back to Juventus in January after failing to impress the Liverpool boss in the weeks since arriving on Merseyside, according to Tuttomercatoweb.
It is said that Klopp has decided that Arthur is not the right man for the job and is considering whether or not to sign a new midfielder when the transfer market reopens at the turn of the year. The Reds would ‘not be afraid’ to risk embarrassing themselves by calling a premature end to Arthur’s time at the club, with the former Barcelona man having failed to make the grade at Anfield during his short spell on their books.
There could be further issues for Arthur if he does return to Juventus, with the Italian giants having deemed him surplus to requirements prior to his Liverpool move at the start of the season. Massimiliano Allegri reportedly has no intention of reintegrating the midfielder back into his Juventus squad, which suggests that he could be left in limbo if Liverpool decide to send him back at the beginning of the January transfer window.
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Liverpool were said to have paid Juventus a loan fee in the region of £3.9million in exchange for Arthur, who joined Barcelona from Gremio in 2018 before moving to Turin on a permanent basis two years later. The Reds also retain the option to buy him outright for a sum of around £32m at the end of the season, although it seems unlikely that Klopp would be willing to sanction the midfielder’s capture as things stand.
The Liverpool boss insisted that patience was needed when quizzed on Arthur’s lack of minutes earlier this month in a strong hint that he is not at the level required to excel under the German manager’s guidance in the Premier League this season.
“Arthur needs now just football and training especially, that’s how it is,” Klopp told reporters ahead of Liverpool’s humbling defeat at the hands of Napoli.
“He wasn’t in team training for a while at Juve, so he needs proper team training and that’s what we are doing with him. Can he play minutes? Yes. Should he play a full game? No, because he needs to get used to the intensity in each competition.
“It’s not like in the Champions League you have to work less than in the Premier League, not at all, especially not here. He is doing well, he is really giving his absolute all in training. We have to be careful with him as well and then we will see whether we can use him.”
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