There’s a success story hidden inside Liverpool’s transfer window tales of woe. In lieu of welcoming expensive signings, Jürgen Klopp is celebrating the club’s ability to extend the contracts of his most valuable players. For the manager, right now, keeping his star players at the club, and well-compensated for their efforts, is important.
Klopp has had to deal with losing his top performers in the past while at Borussia Dortmund but aside from the Philippe Coutinho saga, the manager has maintained his core team while at Liverpool. That’s part of the master plan to make the Reds a dominant force again.
Melissa Reddy interviewed Klopp while the team was in New York. When speaking about any potential summer business, the manager opened up about his priorities when it comes to the team’s improvement.
In the last year Liverpool have extended the contracts of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané, Roberto Firmino, Jordan Henderson, Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Andy Robertson, and Divock Origi. These players are important to Klopp’s plans, and the club losing players of their caliber, while in their prime, is something the manager hopes to avoid.
“That’s actually our transfers, but nobody’s interested in hearing that really because that’s how it is,” said Klopp.
”You have a player, he’s good, you want to keep him, if he signs a new contract then for a few people, it means only that he will be more expensive when we sell him or whatever, or that it doesn’t mean anything nowadays.
”In our case, these are our transfers. The new contracts and keeping these boys here is a strong, strong signal for the outside world. It’s a wonderful sign to be honest. I like the fact that these boys are really at a good football age. They won the European Cup, which is good and helps of course because it increases your base.”
New players are almost always something to get excited about so it feels so boring when there’s nobody leaning on a newly-buffed Melwood drainpipe. But there’s still time to get in a couple of support players to round out the squad.
Extending contracts and performance bonuses are smart moves for the club to make. More winning equals more money. It also shows potential new recruits that Liverpool treat their players well and stability is key. Virgil Van Dijk, James Milner, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are all looking to re-up their memberships.
You can look at Klopp’s plan and say it’s foolish that the Champions League winners didn’t make a world-class signing, but success with sustainability is what most Liverpool supporters have wanted and this approach is a part of that plan. Liverpool are unlikely to get into a bidding war or blow anyone’s socks off this summer with a big money move.
Van Dijk says it’s fine. Don’t worry. And so do Alisson and Salah and Mané and a bunch of their really good teammates.