Liverpool supposedly have a transfer target in mind that puts the future of Joe Gomez into question. The Reds want Ronald Araujo, according to reports.
ESPN claimed on Thursday that Liverpool want Barcelona centre-back, Ronald Araujo. The Uruguayan’s contract expires in 2023, meaning he could leave for a cut-price fee next year.
And Liverpool, it seems, are into that idea. They’re apparently ahead of Chelsea & Manchester United in the running here.
But, naturally, that brings up some questions. Firstly, do Liverpool need a new centre-back? They currently have four senior options, meaning Nat Phillips can’t actually get a game right now.
Adding another seems a little strange – unless there are big plans afoot. We’re not sure, for instance, that this transfer would be good news for Joe Gomez?
Joe Gomez or Ronald Araujo?
We’ve long assumed that Gomez was the long-term planned partner for Ibrahima Konate. They have a nice balance between them, with Gomez a little bit older and experienced.
Signing Araujo, however, would surely change that. The Reds aren’t signing him without assurances that he has a starring role one day – otherwise, we imagine he’d just re-sign with Barcelona.
And given he’s only 22, he seems like a natural partner for Konate going forward. They could progress well together, eventually taking over from Virgil van Dijk & Joel Matip.
But that leaves Gomez a little lost. We’ve had him down as Van Dijk’s ultimate successor as a 24-year-old who’s a proven Premier League champion.
In fact, Gomez is – in our mind – the best English centre-half when fit. The problem is that he’s frequently unfit.
We’ve seen him miss seasons through injuries – plural. That’s bad news for a player as young as 24.
So whether Liverpool think they can upgrade on Gomez or whether they simply don’t trust his fitness, it appears the Englishman may see his place in the pecking order fall.
If ESPN have these Araujo rumours correct, of course.