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Your Transfer Rumor Strains Credulity: Aubameyang to Liverpool Edition

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Everything about this move makes perfect sense if you don’t think about it.

Liverpool v Borussia Dortmund - UEFA Europa League Quarter Final: Second Leg Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

With Liverpool’s pursuit of Mohamed Salah starting to resemble Zeno’s paradox of Achilles and the tortoise, thoughts have understandably drifted towards reinforcements in other areas of the pitch. The back four is an area of concern, but the club are still dealing with the aftermath of the Virgil Van Dijk pursuit while also working very quietly to find a starter at the left back position (presumably).

While Liverpool have also been linked to some prominent strikers in recent weeks - most notably, Alexandre Lacazette for the 9,127th time ever - Jürgen Klopp appears to be reasonably satisfied with using Roberto Firmino as the tip of the spear. Dominic Solanke was brought in as one for the future, so if there are any remaining question marks at that position, they revolve around Daniel Sturridge’s health and his long-term prospects with Liverpool.

This is where Le Parisien enter stage left with reports that Borussia Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who is under contract until 2020, is open to reuniting with his former boss at Anfield. At 28 years of age as of today (happy birthday Pierre-Emerick), the Gabonese forward is arguably about to enter the wrong side of his prime, but remains one of the most feared marksmen in European football, having scored 31 goals in the past Bundesliga season.

Up until recently Aubameyang had been heavily linked with Paris St.-Germain, but the French heavyweights rather noisily threw in the towel on that pursuit, reportedly unconvinced as to the value of what would have been a £61 million or more deal. The reports out of France now suggest that Klopp and Fenway Sports Group are undeterred by the hefty price tag, and that they are ready to swoop, aided by the fact that the player may be enticed by the project being undertaken at Anfield.

This might make sense were it not for the fact that Liverpool and the word “value” have appeared in close proximity whenever transfer price tags are discussed by Fenway Sports Group - perhaps more often than some supporters would like to see. Even setting aside the business questions, at £61 million, the player would almost certainly have to feature regularly, which begs the questions of what to do with Firmino and Sturridge?

Given the stalled discussions with PSG, it’s difficult to see this as anything other than an attempt to restart conversations with suitors. If, on the other hand, Liverpool have a trick up their sleeve (which hasn’t happened very often), this might yet turn out to be a momentous transfer window for the Reds.