Journalist Fabrizio Romano claims Liverpool asked for Ousmane Dembele back in June. This transfer window could have been very different.

Romano makes the claim on Twitter. He says Liverpool asked Barcelona for a loan deal with an option to buy. Things didn’t turn out, however, as Dembele ‘decided to stay at Barcelona’.

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The implication there is that Liverpool may have gotten that one done, or at least that the Catalonians were open to the idea. Instead, the player just didn’t want a move to Anfield.

Romano goes on to say that Manchester United might find it a struggle to sign Dembele, too. He appears to want a longer stay with Barcelona.

What RTK has to say

Dembele is undoubtedly a hugely talented player – there’s a reason Barcelona paid over £135m for him, after all. But he’s also a hugely injury-prone player.

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That’s something we’ve covered before, as this is hardly the first time we’ve seen links between Dembele and Liverpool. You can read about his extensive injury history here, but long story short, it hasn’t been an easy few years.

And in hindsight, this worked out for the best.

Liverpool surely offered a loan for two reasons. Firstly, because of his injury record. You don’t want to spend a ton of money on someone who could break down fast. A year’s loan allows Liverpool to truly study the potential investment.

The other reason is the current economic climate. Things were a lot less certain back in June – and they’re still pretty uncertain now. The plan may well have been to pay very little now and see if things are more comfortable in a year.

But it wasn’t to be – and that’s a good thing. Liverpool instead have Diogo Jota now and while he may not have the high ceiling of Dembele, he does tick some other boxes.

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For one, he doesn’t have the injury history, making him a safer investment. And coming from Wolves, he will likely suit being a squad player to begin with better than Dembele. It’s hard to believe Dembele’s next move will be for anything other than first-team football.

So as exciting as Dembele may have been, we’re glad things worked out the way they did.

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