Could Liverpool look to rekindle their interest in Anderlecht wonderkid Jeremy Doku after the teenage sensation burst onto the international scene following a stunning debut with Belgium?
Doku, 18, was handed his first cap by Roberto Martinez on Saturday following a substitute appearance in the final two minutes of a 2-0 win against Denmark in Copenhagen.
Days later, the young striker was handed his first start for his national side in Brussels on Tuesday night. Doku rounded off a stunning performance by scoring his first goal for his country during a 5-1 rout against Iceland.
Jeremy Doku’s first career senior international goal!
— Unknown Football Club (@FIFA20CM) September 8, 2020
According to WhoScored, Doku completed more dribbles (4) than any other player on the pitch and he was calculated as the most effective player on the pitch after averaging a total score of 8.9 which was higher than that of both Dries Mertens and Kevin de Bruyne.
Belgian journalist Kristof Terreur, European Football Correspondent for HLN, recently credited Liverpool’s interest in Doku following his inaugural Belgium goal by stating: “Liverpool tried to sign him two years ago”.
👀 | Liverpool tried to sign Jeremy Doku when Anderlecht signed Lazar Markovic on loan two years ago.[Kristof Terreur] pic.twitter.com/GLDGkjraWg
— The Anfield Buzz (@TheAnfieldBuzz) September 9, 2020
He quotes Doku as saying: “They invited my parents and me for a stadium tour and a visit to the training ground. Mané talked to me. Klopp showed interest too.”
It was also reported that Liverpool even tried to sweeten the deal by offering Lazar Markovic on loan.
“Anderlecht’s General Manager Herman Van Holsbeek (said) at the time: “We didn’t have a choice. Liverpool told us: you can loan Markovic, but we want to talk to Doku.’”
Cheikh Fall, a football agent based in Belgium, also recently spoke out with Voetbal Nieuws recently on player fees.
“In Belgium, there is really a lot of talent,” he said. “Of course you have talents like Jonathan David and Sambi Lokonga, who even seem like ‘veterans’ because they have been around for two years already.
“You also have talents like Aster Vranckx and Jérémy Doku, who are already established at their clubs. Although they, like all players in football, will also be cheaper due to the current situation in football.”
Who is Doku?
Currently being utilised under the management of Anderlecht head coach and former Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany, Doku is certainly one for the future.
The teenager clocked up 21 appearances in the Belgian top-flight during the 2019/20 campaign before the season was eventually curtailed in March due to the ongoing pandemic.
He scored three times in the league under Kompany last season while also registering three assists.
This time around, Doku has made a strong start to the season having scored and assisted during Anderlechts opening four league matches.
Doku has already been compared with top European speedsters such as Ansu Fati (£40m) of Barcelona and Vinícius Júnior (£50m) of Real Madrid who the report claim to be worth a combined £90m.
Considering his age, and the fact he is still relatively unknown across Europe would deem that Liverpool may need to act quickly and shrewdly if they are to get a deal over the line.
It once again highlights the value of looking abroad for potential hidden gems rather than paying other the odds for home-growm prospects.
Doku would be a long-term investment, one who would add depth in a position where more competition is needed.
This is an interesting one to watch given Liverpool have thrived having previously shopped in this particular area of the market and it will be interesting to see if a move materialises before the transfer deadline on October 5.
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