Liverpool are lucky enough to boast a number of top-quality options at centre-back. Alongside Virgil Van Dijk, the trio of Joel Matip, Ibrahima Konate and Joe Gomez are about as good as it gets.
But injuries to Matip in particular this season mean that they’ll soon be forced to replace the now 31-year-old.
Filling the Cameroonian’s size 13’s will be no easy task. Over recent seasons he’s found himself in the conversation as being one of the Reds best centre-backs of the Premier League era.
As luck would have it though, they could have just been handed his replacement on a silver platter.
Bayern Munich’s Benjamin Pavard is a player with huge pedigree in the world game. A World Cup winner with France in 2018, he has recently admitted that he wants a new challenge in his club career. Liverpool should be all over it.
Pavard announces intention to leave Bayern
It doesn’t seem two minutes since Pavard’s screamer in the World Cup quarter-final against Argentina in Russia.
That goal really announced the then Stuttgart player onto the world stage. From there, he joined Bayern in a £30m deal in summer 2019.
Since then, Pavard has won everything there is to win. A three-time Bundesliga champion, he’s also collected a Champions League trophy, a Club World Cup, a Super Cup and a DFB Pokal.
Now, in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, the 26-year-old suggests he wants a new challenge. After playing for years as a makeshift right-back, Pavard wants to move into the centre.
“I‘ve been playing in Germany for 7 years. I won everything with Bayern. I play football to win and I’m ready to consider new interesting projects, but as a centre-back,” the Frenchman said via Florian Plettenburg on Twitter.
Plenty of reasons for Liverpool to get involved
Liverpool were reportedly one of the sides interested in Pavard before the perennial German champions swooped in.
Now, with some longer-term planning to be done in the defence, the timing looks right. Following the transfers of Thiago Alcantara and Sadio Mane between the two clubs, Bayern and Liverpool are said to have a good relationship.
With Pavard openly positioning himself for an exit, maybe the Reds can put that to use again. His fee and wage surely wouldn’t be astronomical, and at almost twenty-seven, he’s of peak age and experience.
His obvious versatility would also appeal to Jurgen Klopp. In that respect, as well as a possible successor to Matip, maybe Pavard could replace the often below-par Joe Gomez, too.
Some would suggest that the World Cup winner may be the wrong kind of option for Liverpool. But such a player doesn’t become available all too often. The Reds should at least throw their hat in the ring.