Romeo Lavia transfer point of view as the state of play of Liverpool explained - Liverpool Echo

Romeo Lavia transfer point of view as the state of play of Liverpool explained – Liverpool Echo

Transfer speculation at Liverpool would always ramp up this summer, with the Reds poised for one of their more active spells.

In recent seasons there has been little revenue at Anfield and Jurgen Klopp’s squad has required only minor adjustments over a five-year cycle, winning every major prize offered to them.

In the past two years, Cody Gakpo, Darwin Nunez, Luis Diaz and Ibrahima Konate have been lone arrivals for the big bucks, though the Uruguayan has been supplemented by teenagers Fabio Carvalho and Calvin Ramsay.

And while Kostas Tsimikas, Thiago Alcantanra and Diogo Jota were an incoming trio in the summer of 2021, veteran goalkeepers Adrian and Andy Lonergan, teenagers Harvey Elliott and Sepp van den Berg, and mid-season signing Takumi Minamino after his De £7.25 million escape clause represents Liverpool’s only other income since winning the Champions League in 2019.

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But with Klopp’s first great Reds side now at the end of its cycle, as evidenced by an aging squad navigating a transition campaign in 2022/23, it has always been clear that more operations would be needed this summer as Liverpool planning a revamp in midfield.

Alexis Mac Allister was the first newcomer, joining from Brighton & Hove Albion for a fee of around £35 million within two weeks of the Premier League season ending. The World Cup winner is expected to be one of two, if not three, new engine room signings this summer, with a left-sided centre-back also on The Reds’ wish list.

Naturally, Liverpool’s poor results last season complicated things on the transfer front. Although they initially wanted Jude Bellingham, they pulled out of the race to sign the England international in April, acknowledging the need for a number of good quality new recruits rather than one big new signing, and to adjust their transfer budget accordingly had to be distributed.

Meanwhile, uncertainty over whether or not the Reds would qualify for this season’s Champions League also raised questions about the budget and players Liverpool could target.

As a result, the club’s shortlist of potential signings was longer than usual reported by ECHO in March. Heightened transfer speculation eventually went hand in hand with such forward planning as a result, with a big summer always expected at Anfield.

Following the signing of Mac Allister, Khephren Thuram, Manu Kone, Ryan Gravenberch, Gabri Veiga and Romeo Lavia are considered to be just some of the names on Liverpool’s list of possible signings, first reported earlier this summer by ECHO. Meanwhile, defensively, Levi Colwill has his admirers at Anfield, while the Reds have been linked with both Micky van de Ven and Goncalo Inacio.

As a result there have been investigations and all sorts of talks in relation to some of the linked players, but this is just the normal due diligence from the Reds as they weigh their options rather than ‘tightened’ transfer talks, with no new developments regarding the incoming arrival of Liverpool. business at this time.

While reports in recent days have suggested the Reds are in talks for the likes of Lavia and Veiga, club sources have dismissed such speculation as Liverpool are not yet at a stage where they are accelerating efforts to sign their second signing of the summer.

Klopp had previously suggested he would like to see new signings in time for the start of pre-season on July 8, but it was quickly acknowledged that would not be possible. For starters, a number of interesting players are currently competing in the European Under-21 Championships in Romania and Georgia, which will end on the same day as the Reds report for pre-season.

As a result, if Liverpool were to move for any of the competing players, they would have to wait for their international exploits to be over. Meanwhile, if signed, such players would receive holidays before reporting for pre-season at the end of July, negating the need for rapid progress in such transfers.

Admittedly, Lavia will not compete in the European Championships due to injury, while Veiga’s contract would have a release clause of £34 million. Consequently, if the Reds went through with a transfer for either player at this point, they would now be free to agree terms.

Instead, the reported talks and inquiries remain mere due diligence as Liverpool continue to weigh their options, with a number of players on their shortlist before taking it further towards their only desired goal.

Such a practice is nothing new at Anfield. In 2020, the Reds had two other players interested in Ismaila Sarr and Jonathan David before signing Jota, while Kostas Tsimikas arrived after also reigning over Sergio Reguillon, Lloyd Kelly and Jamal Lewis. Yet such confirmation only came after Liverpool made their final moves.

As a result, while the Reds could continue efforts to sign a Lavia or Veiga later this summer, they could also just leave their initial talks as nothing more than that, bringing in alternative targets instead.

While some of Liverpool’s shortlisted names are indeed well known, The Reds have yet to take their decisive step.

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