We now have an idea of Liverpool’s future XI after the Reds made several reported contract offers. So what will it look like?
This summer has been about contracts. Liverpool have tied down Alisson Becker, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho and Virgil van Dijk to long-term deals.
The Athletic claim more are on the way. Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane are in line, while Mohamed Salah is now the priority.
There’s also Jordan Henderson, though that one is complicated. Talks were struggling between the two but Liverpool, under pressure from Jurgen Klopp, bumped up their offer.
It appears they now have an agreement and Henderson will stick around longer.
All of these deals are long-term. Salah’s proposed offer could be the shortest we know of, in fact, as it would run into 2025. So with that in mind, what does the future XI look like?
Future XI after contract offers
It looks as though Liverpool want to stick with their current XI for quite some time. Right through to at least 2024, in fact.
There are some absentees, however.
Thiago, for instance, has a four-year contract. We doubt Liverpool plan on him being a first-team regular in his last season and they’ll surely look to replace him before the 2023/24 campaign.
The fact he’s been battling an injury for over a year is extra ammunition for that.
The most notable absence is Roberto Firmino, though.
We’ve written before about Liverpool needing to choose who to replace first in their famed front-three. By offering Salah and Mane contracts, it appears Firmino is the one.
That doesn’t mean he won’t get an offer – he almost certainly will – but he’s not the priority. We can only imagine that’s because Liverpool don’t see him as a long-term first-choice option.
His replacement seems obvious, though – Diogo Jota. He started ahead of Firmino against Norwich City and that might be the plan over the next few years.
Centre-back isn’t a particularly interesting one but it’s worth mentioning. Both Joe Gomez and Ibrahima Konate are very young – they should be around for a long time to come.
Exactly who will partner Van Dijk as first-choice over the next few years, though, isn’t clear. We imagine this season will tell us that.
Midfield isn’t clear, either. As we say, Thiago will likely phase out and we don’t know what the plan is with Henderson.
Curtis Jones, though, appears set for a first-team role before long. We imagine he’ll replace Thiago and Henderson might stick around for quite some time.
So this is how we see things looking over the next few years:
Alexander-Arnold – Konate – Van Dijk – Robertson
Henderson – Fabinho – Jones
Salah – Jota – Mane
How might things change?
This is obviously just how things look now. Injury, form and strategy changes could all affect things in a big way.
There’s also a very good chance that Liverpool sign someone to break into this side. As we said, the midfield isn’t clear and the club may simply sign an addition to improve it.
The forward line is questionable, too, given both Salah and Mane are moving into their 30s. We’re also not completely sold on Jota as a centre-forward in this trio.
Again, then, there’s always potential for a signing to shake things up. But the XI above certainly appears to be the plan over the next few years – as things stand.