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Diogo Jota position has direct impact on Liverpool's recruitment - RTK View

With Liverpool expected to sign at least one forward this summer, the future of current star Diogo Jota will have a direct impact on exactly who is brought in.

Divock Origi and Xherdan Shaqiri are widely expected to leave the club this summer.

They are expected to be joined in the departure lounge by Takumi Minamino and Harry Wilson.

Meanwhile, Harvey Elliott could potentially go out on loan once again.

That would leave Liverpool with just four natural attackers in the squad – Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota.

With Salah, Mane and Firmino all approaching 30, it is clear that they will begin to be phased out in the coming seasons.

That is why this summer is a crucial one for the Reds. They need to sign forwards, but they need to choose who they sign very carefully.

Raphinha, Coutinho and Tielemans: The signings Liverpool could make this summer

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Who they sign this summer will have a direct impact on how the first-choice XI will look in two, three and four years time.

Of course, the biggest sides rotate their starting team regularly. But Jurgen Klopp has benefitted greatly from having a regular first-choice team that play in all the biggest games.

Essentially, Liverpool need to decide what their future front three will look like, and they need to decide quickly.

The sensible thing to do would be to sign two young players this summer that can compete for a starting spot this year but develop and nail down a regular place in the next two years.

Jota holds the key to who is signed

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This is where Diogo Jota comes in. Unlike the other three Reds mentioned above, he is still a few years away from his prime.

He was signed for £41m (BBC) last summer. The club simply wouldn’t have done that if they did not believe that he was going to be a potential superstar and the future of the Liverpool attack.

He had an unbelievable start to his Anfield career, although injury did slow him down. Nevertheless, nobody could have predicted that he would be as good as he has been.

It is obvious that he will be a part of the front three for years to come. But what is not obvious is what position he will play in.

Last season, he started 12 games on the left-wing. He started seven as a centre-forward and six on the right-wing.

Now, he is unlikely to settle on the right flank. Harvey Elliott is the obvious candidate to eventually replace Mo Salah in that role.

Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

But if Jota’s future is as a left-winger, then Liverpool have to sign a No 9, like Donyell Malen or Alexander Isak this summer.

If Liverpool see him settling as the central striker, then they need to sign a left-winger.

The other option is to sign an older stop-gap deputy, like Xherdan Shaqiri, before signing a superstar when Salah, Mane and Firmino leave.

Yet that would be a very expensive solution.

It will be interesting to see who the Reds pursue this summer. It will certainly give us an idea of where Diogo Jota’s future lies.

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