Liverpool are just over a month away from starting their Premier League crown defense.
The Reds secured a long-awaited league title this summer, and now have just a few more weeks before the 2020/21 campaign kicks off in September.
Despite the new season just a few weeks from the resume, most of the talk about Anfield has been about possible new arrivals.
Costa Tsimikas with full defense is expected to arrive from Olympiacos this week, but what to do with the other new recruits?
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ECHO’s Reds correspondent Paul Gorst has been answering questions about Liverpool̵7;s possible transfer relationship, as well as addressing some of the rumors that have been circulating a lot in recent days.
Below is a complete transcript of the website:
Will Guinea Wijnaldum sign a new contract? If not, does Liverpool intend to sell him in this transfer window?
PG: That’s really unsafe, right?
Liverpool, I was told, took the closing decision to leave all contract negotiations and transfer discussions, which meant there would be little progress in Wijnaldum’s situation.
Now it’s all over and it’s working once again, though and it’s one of the biggest field issues at the club right now.
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He played 37 times last season in the Premier League, so he is clearly a big name for Jurgen Klopp, so it is impossible to suggest that the club does not want to renew his contract.
The ball is probably in his court but since he is in the last 12 months, the club has a big decision to make.
Personally, I do not think they will charge it. They will do their best to make sure he signs.
Who is the most real replacement for Dejan Lovren?
PG: Hardly, I am convinced that Ben White was revealed throughout last season’s Championship campaign in Leeds.
And I believe there is – or at least has been – interest in Sevilla Diego Carlos earlier this year. The required pricing or its release clause may be a bit on the high side right now.
Liverpool need an experienced center-back to cover Lovren’s loss, though. He played over 200 Premier League games for Liverpool and Southampton.
A new one coming to replace him is a big question.
Is there any truth in Ismaila Sarr as a possible transfer? If so, would it not hinder Harvey Elliott’s progress?
PG: There is, but it is not so black as to say that he will come to Liverpool.
I was told at the end of last week that he is one of a number of options that has been looked at and pursued.
His profile fits the bill in terms of reserve in three money, with a high potential ceiling.
Like the pursuit of Jamal Lewis, Liverpool are likely to feel they can take quality from a shifting side.
The issue may be, however, the price.
Watford paid 25 million for last summer and he has only increased his reputation in the Premier League. I would not be too sure to say that he will be a Reds player before the end of the transfer window, but I had confirmed that he is of interest.
As for Elliott’s progress, he has only turned 17 in recent months, so there is absolutely no pressure on him to apply for a more regular place in the first team squad.
The club has high hopes for him and see him as a long-term Liverpool player for at least the next 10 years, so the arrival of someone older to fight for a place in that first three is not seen as a massive setback to Elliott right now.
I have always been under the impression that we will see some developments with the transfer of Thiago after his season ends with Bayern Munich in Lisbon. Do you believe that there will be contacts between us and Bayern after their campaign is over?
PG: This is a reasonable school of thought, but I have been told on two separate occasions that Thiago Alcantara is not being considered in the Liverpool recruitment room.
It seems like he is keen to leave Bayern Munich this summer and why would not he want to come to Liverpool now?
But, no, I do not think he will sign for the Reds. All the fuss about this particular deal seems to be coming from the end of Bayern.
At 29, I’m not sure he has the profile the club is looking at.
Although he is a quality player, of course.
Klopp traditionally likes new recruits at first, do you expect moves for further signings in front of Evian training camp?
PG: Traditionally, Klopp would have preferred his signatures on the door early.
Any manager would tell you the same thing, but with the window opening until the first week of October and the club still largely valuing their finances, I think it may be possible for us to see the move a little later than usually.
Klopp said a few weeks later that the club would play something of a host match, so it looks like it will be the plan.
The club has yet to confirm another trip to Evian-les-Bains but Klopp is keen to make it happen.
Last year, the Reds played Lyon in Geneva, near the place where their training camp was located and I know the manager is a big fan of the hard work he is able to undertake there.
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Is there any interest in Ozan Kabak?
PG: No. My colleague Connor Dunn recently wrote that he is not a player under consideration.
Have Liverpool lined up any pre-season friendlies?
PG: So far the club has not received any concrete plans for the pre-season.
They will be back in Melwood today after a two-week break, so plans may begin to take more shape over the next few days regarding friendships.
I do not think we will see much.
The club also has Community Shield to compete at the end of this month as well.
We saw a few months back that the club was able to arrange a friendly with Blackburn fairly quickly, so I would suggest it might be some sort of program similar to some Anfield friendships behind closed doors against teams within 50 miles or so more.
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Premier League champions Liverpool are closing in on their first signing of the summer after agreeing a deal for Costas Tsimikas.
The Olympiacos defender has emerged as the Reds’ main target to compete with Andy Robertson on the left wing.
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Has the club lined up a new sponsor for the shirt sleeves? Anything about field sponsorship?
PG: The club is in talks, I believe, about a sleeve sponsorship.
Their deal with Western Union recently ended and is another route they can explore as a revenue stream.
However, I doubt the club will put the right name on the new training ground.
The club has explored the possibility of naming the stand when Anfield Road has been widened but these are just the first few days.
This shows that the club is at least open to that sponsorship area, at least. But nothing in the pipeline as far as I know with the new Kirkby facility.
How long has the Costas Tsimikas club been following? Is he better than Jamal Lewis?
PG: The club has been aware of Tsimika for about three years.
The scouts were sent to Willem II to keep charts on Pedro Chirivella’s development when they noticed Tsimikas and his ability.
So Liverpool have been holding the tables ever since.
But as wide and extensive as their search network is, they will be aware of so many players across Europe.
I have no idea if he is “better” than Jamal Lewis.
I can not think I watched him (Tsimikas) a terrible amount, other than the strange Europa League game against Arsenal and the Wolves.
Lewis was highly regarded and the fact that he was the first one they tried for speaks volumes, but Tsimikas also has many backgrounds.
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