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Liverpool made contact over Tonali, says Brescia President

Brescia president Massimo Cellino claims there has been contact from Liverpool about Sandro Tonali.

Cellino told Corriere dello Sport about Liverpool’s interest when discussing a potential move to AS Roma.

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Liverpool make Tonali contact

“Yes, Roma have asked me about Tonali,” he said.

“I’ve talked about him to [Roma director, Mauro] Baldissoni several times, but I want to keep the kid as long as possible.

“Is he ready? I don’t know, he’s 18. But Liverpool also contacted me a little while ago.”

Who is Sandro Tonali?

Tonali isn’t a name that is known to most outside of Italy. That’s understandable, however, when you consider he plays in Serie B.

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He’s built a reputation for himself there, though, breaking through at 17 years old and is now in his second season.

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Tonali was the 2018 Serie B player of the year, and was even called up to the Italian National team in November. Quite the achievement for a teenager who has never featured in the top flight.

Tonali has drawn comparisons with Andrea Pirlo while playing as a deep midfielder. With that in mind, it’s no real surprise that Champions League sides are expressing their interest.

Where would Tonali fit in?

The 18-year-old would have a natural position as the ‘6’ in Jurgen Klopp’s system. It’s a role that Jordan Henderson has filled until now, even if he’s not 100% suited to it.

Tonali can play it naturally, though. He averages over five interceptions a game in the role – the same as Henderson & Fabinho – although he still has catching up to do in other areas.

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Henderson averages a little over 70 passes a game as a ‘6’. Tonali, on the other hand, is only used to playing 40.

That’s quite a difference and it’s clear to see that Tonali need developing if the contact from Liverpool develops.

But that’s why you sign an 18-year-old. Liverpool and Klopp could develop a talent like Tonali in their own style, teaching him to play the passing game as a long-term replacement for Henderson.

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