Liverpool are in talks over Donyell Malen, according to reports. How much should the Reds look to pay for the Dutchman?
Journalist Marco Timmer told Voetbal International that Liverpool are in initial talks for Donyell Malen. He says PSV Eindhoven don’t expect the player back next season.
“There are negotiations going on, and with that, it can also be counted on the negotiations that in this case, Mino Raiola is conducting with Dortmund or Liverpool, for example, for Malen,” he said (translation by SportWitness).
Malen is certainly an interesting prospect. He’s still only 22 but scored 19 Eredivisie goals last season, along with another eight assists.
The forward is a quick, direct player who can lead the line. We also expect Liverpool could develop him in the wide positions, too, adding to his game.
So how much should Liverpool pay for a player like that? We have a look at the situation.
Liverpool start Malen talks
So Liverpool could end up with around £60m – £70m to spend this summer, if things go to plan. But it is a little more complicated than that.
They almost certainly need to sign a midfielder as well as a forward. Gini Wijnaldum left the club this summer, leaving a gap in the squad.
We’d argue that’s the priority over a forward right now. So with that in mind, Liverpool probably shouldn’t go big on a forward until they’ve wrapped up their midfield.
They can’t afford to end up struggling to sell players and not being able to afford their midfield target.
Targeting the Eredivisie makes sense, then. Players are usually good value from that league, given it isn’t the richest around. But that doesn’t mean players are cheap.
We can look at two recent PSV sales for an idea of how much they’d want, too. Both Hirving Lozano and Steven Bergwijn left the club within the previous two years and both were stars.
Lozano had two fantastic years with PSV, scoring 40 goals from the wing. That earned him a £36m move to Napoli in 2019.
Bergwijn didn’t quite hit those heights. Having been with PSV since he was a youngster, he bagged 41 goals from the wing in the 18/19 campaign before slowing down a little the next season.
Still, Tottenham Hotspur spent £27m to sign him in January 2020.
So in a typical summer, we’d be looking at around £30m for Malen. We think he’ll cost less, though.
Clubs just played a season without fans and that creates a need for many to sell players. They need funds and can’t really run a risk of failing to bring them in.
Malen is almost certainly available for under what Bergwijn cost, then. That’s what we think Liverpool should aim for.
Signing Malen for under £25m, maybe aiming for £20m, would be fantastic business if they can get it done. They’d bring in a player with great potential who adds another dimension to their attack as a direct striker.