When Cody Gakpo arrived at Liverpool in early January following the Reds’ Christmas move for the Dutchman, the early weeks of his time at Anfield were challenging.
Gakpo ended up joining a Liverpool side who have worked their way through the season and have found it difficult to maintain consistency or rediscover the identity that has defined them in recent seasons. The tall, lean striker who arrived across Europe with a burgeoning reputation, a departure from the sort of three-forer player the Reds were accustomed to in the era of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.
He played through the middle and wide in the first weeks, in a team that lacked confidence and faith. Eyes were on Gakpo, a player who was heavily associated with Manchester United prior to his move to Liverpool. social media as a sort of justification by United fans for their team not signing him, and the recently 24-year-old has been regarded as indicative of the troubles at the Reds and the club’s once-lauded recruitment strategy is now beginning to falter.
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To judge Gakpo so early in his time at the club, and in a squad that hadn’t found the rhythm of previous seasons, was harsh to say the least.
Monday night’s 3-0 win over Leicester City at the King Power Stadium saw the Reds narrow their gap to the top four to just one point, with both Newcastle United and Manchester United, while both have a game credit against Liverpool, now nervous about looking their shoulders at the Reds who nearly trumpeted their performance to clinch a Champions League spot just weeks earlier.
Liverpool’s win over the Foxes secured a seventh-place finish in the Premier League as Jurgen Klopp’s men have rediscovered the identity they had been missing and given themselves a chance at a top-four finish that was almost impossible just a few weeks ago. seemed.
The performance levels of the entire team have been increased, almost to a man. Gakpo is one of the players who have significantly increased his contributions, with a fee of £37m that seemed like a bargain at the time before it felt like an overpayment, now all the way back in the category of first.
Gakpo now looks like a Liverpool player, he has impact, he offers something different for the Reds front line and he has grown in stature to show that he more than fits in. It’s exciting for Reds fans to think what he could deliver from the start of next season where the Reds hope to continue at the level they’ve reached over the past month.
Gakpo has seen the biggest rise in valuation for Liverpool since the start of the year, according to data analysts from both Football Benchmark and Switzerland’s CIES Football Observatory, who use a host of statistics to determine a player’s valuation in the transfer market. .
According to Football Benchmark, Gakpo’s value in the market is now £61m, up £7.3m from the £53.7m analysts placed on him in January. That particular valuation caused the Reds to pay some 45 per cent less than what Football Benchmark placed him at. Using their valuation tool, Gakpo’s form since arriving has seen it gain a market value 64 percent higher than its purchase price, with Ibrahima Konate, Alisson Becker and Diogo Jota the only other players to see a market value increase since the spin of the year, according to Football Benchmark statistics.
In the case of CIES analysts, they estimate the value of Gakpo at €80 (£69.5m), a £32.5m increase over the price paid for the Netherlands international, an increase of nearly 88 percent in appreciation.
What the data suggests is a win for Liverpool’s recruitment department, one that didn’t look so tense in the early weeks of Gakpo’s time at Liverpool.
Given his age profile, if Gakpo continued to develop and stay on the sort of path he is currently on, his value could almost triple in no time, demonstrating why the recruiting approach at Anfield has proved so popular with the club in the past club few years. The hope is that some more of that transfer success can come this summer, when the Reds owners, Fenway Sports Group, will have to back a fairly significant rebuild of parts of the team to ensure this season’s struggles aren’t repeated . .
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