Liverpool ‘submit bid’ for Wataru Endo as Jorg Schmadtke picks left-field option

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Liverpool have reportedly submitted a formal bid for Stuttgart midfielder Wataru Endo as Jurgen Klopp and sporting director Jorg Schmadtke look to fix the Reds’ woes in the middle of the pitch. The Japanese international could join alongside Fiorentina’s Sofyan Amrabat, as Manchester United’s attempts to sign the Moroccan have been recently hijacked by Liverpool.

Fabrizio Romano has claimed that a bid for the 30-year-old has been sent to Stuttgart, while Endo personally wants the move as it would represent the biggest opportunity of his career.

The move will come as a surprise having been linked with big names such as Jude Bellingham, Moises Caicedo and Romeo Lavia this summer only to end up with a name unfamiliar to many Premier League fans despite impressing in the Bundesliga.

Endo has spent the last four years at Stuttgart, having joined from Belgian side Sint-Truiden after coming through in Japan with Urawa Red Diamonds and Shonan Bellmare.

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Endo usually operates as a defensive midfielder but can also fill in across the backline, perhaps seen as a versatile option by Klopp and Schmadtke to pair with Amrabat should they beat United to the Fiorentina man.

Liverpool’s transfer strategy this summer has recently been slammed by club icon Jamie Carragher, as he described the failed pursuits of Caicedo and Lavia as a “mess” before the Reds pivoted to Endo.

“They need to sign someone in midfield and people know that they’re desperate,” he told Sky Sports on Monday. “They put a bid in for Lavia today for £60million when they refused to pay £50m just four or five days ago. It’s been an absolute mess – it’s a joke.

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“I don’t know why, I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes but a guy [Schmadtke] has come in from Germany who has a relationship with Jurgen Klopp but he’s only there for the summer and then he moves on and Liverpool get another director of football. So in the space of 18 months, Liverpool have had four directors of football.

“They haven’t got deals done. That is your job in that role to get deals over the line – the two players that Liverpool bought had buyout clauses so there’s no negotiating and no big deal to go about, you just meet the buyout clause.

“Liverpool have not got deals over the line and it’s been embarrassing that you start with Lavia and won’t pay a certain amount, you then go for Caicedo and you get something agreed – that’s why I won’t be critical of the owners because they were willing to pay £110m and break the transfer record – but to go with him when he’s been talking to Chelsea for three months, but then they go back to Lavia – it’s an absolute mess.”

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