Jurgen Klopp has made it well-documented that he isn’t expecting Liverpool to go on a heavy spending spree in the summer window following the Reds’ recent coronation as Premier League champions.
The German manager has claimed that Liverpool are unlikely to see a host of high-profile arrivals at the club this summer.
Due to recent events and ongoing uncertainty that comes from the Covid-19 epidemic, Liverpool and FSG are having to be sensible with funds and will likely resist the temptation to utilise their status as champions of England, Europe and the world by going after the continent’s most coveted players.
“We cannot buy just because other teams buy, we cannot buy because everybody wants us to,” Klopp revealed during his Tuesday afternoon press conference.
“We can buy if we have the money for it, if we have the need for it, all that stuff. Then, we will be there. If one of these things is not there, then we will not.
“We try to make right decisions constantly, and then COVID came and changed the situation again and not for the better – for all business in the world, not just football.”
Keita and Jones ready to step up
While this may not be music to the ears of some supporters, it does bode well for the likes of Naby Keita, Curtis Jones, Xherdan Shaqiri and Divock Origi who will hope to thrive and benefit from the lack of incomings this summer.
Keita, who cost the Reds £48 million, has been one of the standout players since Project Restart and will look for a much more influential campaign in 2020/21.
The Guinean midfielder has been limited to just seven league starts all season due to numerous injury woes that have hindered the player’s momentum since joining the club in 2018.
However, since the return of football last month, Keita has made seven consecutive appearances for the Reds for the first 22 months.
Liverpool’s lack of transfer activity could pave the way for Keita to showcase his talent and maintain a run in the team that will vindicate the heavy-price tag Klopp had to pay to secure the former RB Leipzig talisman’s service two years ago.
The same could be said for academy graduate and the home-grown Jones.
The 19-year-old is expected to be Adam Lallana’s long-term successor, with the former Southampton starlet due to leave the Reds at the end of the season.
Jones recently was handed his first PL start for Liverpool against Burnley earlier this month, The match finished 1-1 and Liverpool managed five shots from midfield. Jones had three of those five despite leaving the pitch around the hour mark having largely impressed during his Anfield audition.
If Jones is going to become a first-team regular he needs game-time and the trust of his manager.
Klopp’s decision to play down transfer activity could also be due to the number of internal options from the academy such as Neco Williams, Harvey Elliott, and indeed, Jones.
With Lallana’s imminent departure, the club’s decision to potentially avoid bringing in proven midfield cover would dictate that Jones himself has been as the Englishman’s like-for-like replacement and that a run in the team next season is highly likely.
If Klopp is to believe his midfield department is more than sufficient enough to challenge for the league again next season, his faith in his attacking deputies remains just as strong.
“I’m completely happy with my squad 100%”, he added during his pre-Chelsea press conference.
“I was last year when everybody asked us to sign him and him and him. Because of our reasons, we didn’t do it. It’s not that we didn’t want to do it.”
Klopp maintains faith
Two attacking players who will be relieved to hear their manager’s ongoing trust up-top will be Origi and Shaqiri.
Both Liverpool stars have seen a drop-off in performance levels this season and will hope to put things right next season.
The Daily Mail recently reported that Shaqiri could be subject to an Anfield exit in an attempt to raise funds for the 2020/21 season.
However, the report was released before the global pandemic and Klopp’s recent transfer stance could hint that he will look to improve his current attacking options rather than bring in fresh faces.
Shaqiri (£13 million) has started just two PL appearances all season due to an ongoing calf problem and has been a peripheral figure pretty much all season.
He did make his first appearance since December against Arsenal last week which could suggest that Klopp is looking to get him back into the team.
Origi (£10 million) finds himself in a similar position having started just five league matches all season. His goal return of five this campaign is also off the mark of that in the 2018/19 season where he managed eight goals, including the winning goal in the Champions League final.
He is still to score since December and his recent performances have been far from convincing since the restart.
Despite his halt in form, Klopp remains convinced in the Belgian and a lack of transfer activity will likely see Origi as Roberto Firmino’s attacking understudy even with the return of Rhian Brewster, who is currently on loan at Swansea.
Klopp may not be ruling out potential summer additions over the next few months, yet he continues to extol the virtues of a long-term plan that have returned the club back the peak of Europe’s elite.
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