For some fans, that Liverpool’s summer transfer window ended with just the signing of Ibrahima Konaté to show for it was underwhelming. For a few, it was more than that, a sign the club’s owners were derelict in their duty and failing to keep up with the spending of their title rivals.
While there may be valid concerns about having a squad core that’s two years older than the one that won the Champions League and Premier League, and while there’s a solid case to be made that the club are one forward short for the coming campaign, some of those worries serve only obscure a far more positive reality.
They obscure a reality where the club have added not just Konaté but Diogo Jota, Thiago, Curtis Jones, and Havery Elliott as key contributors to those trophy winning sides. And they obscure a reality where for the first time in the Premier League era, the Reds can say they are not a stepping stone club.
“It’s not just about Jordan Henderson today, it’s about the group of players who have signed long-term contracts,” was former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher’s reaction on Sky to a deadline day—and summer—that saw the club more focused on locking down existing contributors than seeking to bring in new ones.
“I think Liverpool have some of the best players in the world, with Alisson signing a six-year deal and Virgil van Djik. I think Mohamed Salah will be the next one to sign. In years gone by, certainly when I was at the club, if we had players of that quality they would be going to Real Madrid or Barcelona.”
It’s a bit of much needed perspective, for both new and even some older fans, about the position the club are in. It’s a much needed reminder, too, that while other clubs have spent the summer spending signing players they hope will be world class for them, Liverpool have been extending players they know are.
Liverpool haven’t spent as much as some, but over the past 14 months there has been significant squad turnover with five key new players added to the mix, and all the other English clubs spending big this summer—bar Manchester City—were doing that spending in an effort to catch up to Jürgen Klopp’s Reds.