Liverpool’s defensive frailties were for the umpteenth time exposed during weekend’s 5-nil heavy thrashing at the hands of Manchester City.
While manager Jurgen Klopp would have been left to rue missing out on Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk, a clearer chance to do so could present itself when the transfer window reopens.
As per Ian McGarry of the Transfer Window Podcast (via Daily Star), the Saints’ lack of European football could see them agree to grant the wishes of their centre-back, but money isn’t the club’s problem having just been taken over by Chinese owners.
Van Dijk is said to have agreed personal terms with Liverpool during the summer transfer window, and is still more than keen to switch Saint Mary’s for Anfield.
According to McGarry: “Liverpool was his first choice. I spoke to a close friend of his and Van Dijk definitely believed his deal to Liverpool was all agreed in terms of his personal terms this transfer window that’s just closed.
“I think the takeover of Southampton Football Club, I say takeover, but the investment in Southampton Football Club had a negative effect from Van Dijk’s point of view.
“They no longer wanted, or needed, the money that they would get from selling him to Liverpool for about £55m.”
Liverpool continue to suffer at the back, with lack of depth and concentration during set-pieces particular weaknesses.
With Champions League also a priority of the club, the club clearly lack enough firepower at the back to challenge on all fronts.
In Van Dijk, Liverpool would have a quality backup in Dejan Lovren on the bench, while their susceptibility of shipping goals when long balls are played into their box could be solved by the Dutch’s presence.
He also offers a general level of assurance when it comes to protecting the goalie, while his ball-playing abilities could make his and Joel Matip’s partnership the best in the league on that front.
If Liverpool are able to land their man in January, they have a better chance at contesting for the title and other trophies.