Houssem Aouar and Lyon knocked Manchester City out of the Champions League on Saturday. The performance showed why Liverpool reportedly want the Frenchman.
Just about everyone expected City to blow past Lyon in their Champions League Quarter-Final. It wasn’t to be, however, and the French side will take their place against Bayern Munich in the next round.
So why’s that relevant to Liverpool? Well, beyond the satisfaction of City failing, there’s also the performance of Aouar.
A Mirror report from a few months ago suggested that Liverpool had two priorities for this transfer window. The first was Timo Werner – and we know how that went. The other, however, was Aouar.
The 22-year-old is a highly-talented attacking midfielder and he would add something a little different to the midfield. His showing v City, though, demonstrated exactly why Liverpool want him.
Aouar put in a wonderfully versatile performance. The midfielder, known for his playmaking, was excellent on the ball as he effectively created both match-winners.
It was his pass that gave Moussa Dembele his first and Lyon’s second. Aouar’s shot was parried poorly for Dembele’s second, too, and the goal that wrapped up the win.
Aouar completed four dribbles in the game – more than anyone on the pitch. No one else in a Lyon shirt managed more than one.
Defensively, too, Aouar shone. The Lyon captain won two tackles in the game, as well as completing an interception. In short, this was an all-action display.
And that’s why he’ll appeal so much to Liverpool. Aouar can create chances. He can score goals – seven in the 18/19 Ligue 1 season. But he can also win the ball back and lead his side.
Liverpool’s midfield is based around midfielders who can do a bit of everything. Aouar is certainly a more specialised player – he’s more attacking that box-to-box – but his versatility makes him a perfect fit for Jurgen Klopp’s machine.
Can it happen?
We don’t know if the move is still on. Recent reports claim he’d cost around £54m – a lot of money for Liverpool right now.
We hope it can happen as Aouar is a fantastic player and a huge talent. At 22, he will only get better, too, and Klopp could work wonders with him.
We’ll have to wait and see, however. Performances like Saturday’s will only drive up his price but at the same time, it will only make Liverpool more assured in their interest.