Liverpool’s transfer gamble could save Klopp’s summer as Reds face Europe crisis

Liverpool took somewhat of a gamble last year when they decided to buy Thiago Alcantara for £20million from European champions Bayern Munich, as they knew they could get him for nothing just a few months down the line.

The Spaniard was available last summer and was reportedly well aware of Liverpool’s internet in signing him a year before the expiration of his contract.

Thiago, widely regarded as one of the best midfielders in the world, wanted to go to Liverpool, but the fact remained that at the time the Reds knew they could wait six months and sign him for nothing.

In the end, they forked out the £5m up front to get the deal done, with the rest to be paid over the course of Thiago’s four-year £200,000-per-week contract.

Since arriving, however, Thiago has failed to find a rhythm in the middle of Jurgen Klopp’s midfield, and has faced unwarranted criticism as a result.

However, that could all change next season, when the midfielder will likely be asked to increase his role and influence in the Liverpool side.

Liverpool signed Thiago Alcantara for £20m last summer when they could have waited and signed him for free this year

With Georginio Wijnaldum’s contract set to run down and expire in the summer, Liverpool’s decision to gamble on Thiago rather than wait is set to really pay off.

Dutch midfielder Wijnaldum is set to depart on a free transfer this summer, with Barcelona set to offer him a huge contract to sign him for nothing.

When he departs, he’ll leave a gaping hole in Liverpool’s midfield, one that Thiago will be expected to fill.

Thiago Alcantara will play a big role for Jurgen Klopp next season
Thiago Alcantara will play a big role for Jurgen Klopp next season

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The 30-year-old isn’t known as a box-to-box midfielder in the same way as Wijnaldum is, but he could provide the perfect cover alongside Jordan Henderson and Fabinho.

Thiago, a master of passing and dictating the tempo of matches, would fit in alongside either Henderson or Wijnaldum, and in doing so could also free up Curtis Jones to get forward and replicate Wijnaldum’s attacking presence.

Liverpool are struggling at the moment, and Saturday’s draw with Newcastle leaves them staring at the prospect of missing out on Champions League football.

Without being able to offer Thiago the chance to continue playing in Europe’s premier competition, the chances of being able to convince him to join them over the likes of Manchester United would have been a tough ask for Liverpool.

Michael Edwards has his work cut out for him this summer in trying to strengthen Liverpool’s squad, and trying to sign a replacement for Wijnaldum who would be an improvement on the Dutchman would be a bridge too far.

The fact the Reds got their business done a year early will prove to be a priceless move.

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