Dave Davis is adamant that although Naby Keïta would be a top signing for Liverpool, purchasing Virgil van Dijk is far more important.
The long and protracted Naby Keïta saga looks like it will most likely end with Liverpool missing out on the player and signing an alternative.
It’s clear that Jürgen Klopp has made Keita one of his main priorities this window and is prepared to smash Liverpool’s transfer record to bring the Guinean to Anfield.
While the 22-year-old would no doubt improve Liverpool’s side it’s questionable whether he’s the most important target.
The Dutchman apparently still has his heart set on a move to Anfield and has made Southampton aware of his intentions.
There may be still some way to go before the 26-year-old potentially undertakes the famous Melwood lean, but on recent evidence that should be the club’s main focus.
Set pieces aren’t a new phrase that makes Reds everywhere wince. For the last few years, they have been an Achilles heel that other sides are more than aware of. Despite the change of management and personnel, improvements have been made but that nervous twinge at an opposition corner still persists.
There’s a strong belief that van Dijk would naturally provide that height, athleticism and leadership that’s needed at the back. It’s hard to name a better centre-half in the league right now as much as it’s difficult to find a crippling weakness in the player’s game.
Multiple clean-sheets were kept at the end of last season and the improved form of Mingolet was a huge positive, however, any side that wants to be successful can’t afford to ship 42 goals in a single league campaign.
Attacking sides are the easiest on the eye, but a top defence is needed to win the trophies we desire.
With Andrew Robertson’s arrival set to provide the required competition at left-back, the signing of Van Dijk would give Liverpool a defence comparable to any major rival.
Chelsea and City were both clearly interested in the player and for good reason. If Mohamed Salah and the 26-year-old were the main additions this season, then two quality players will have been added to our line-up.
Keïta may bring class, but Van Dijk would bring the essentials.