Liverpool fans have by and large found themselves frustrated by the names the club continue to be linked to in attack. With a long list of seemingly unnecessary wingers flanking the striking duo of Dany Ings and Christian Benteke, who have left many concerned about fit, quality, and that it would likely cost well over £30M to bring them in, transfer season hasn’t yet delivered much in the way of hope for a brighter future.
At least in attack. A little further back, with the club having already agreed a deal to steal away James Milner from top four rival Manchester City, the picture is rather rosier. It will be downright sunny—perhaps even blinding so—should reports out of Croatia that a deal has nearly been completed to bring Inter midfielder Mateo Kovacic into the fold for a quite entirely reasonable €18M fee turn out to be true.
Inter famously allowed the sale of Philippe Coutinho to Liverpool in order to fund the purchase of Kovacic in 2013, but with manager Roberto Mancini desperate to fund the arrival of Yaya Toure and few other saleable assets he’s willing to lose, the Italians could once again be willing to sell their future to Anfield. His arrival, along with the recent signing of Milner, could also hint at the way forward for Liverpool.
Though he was bought by Inter as a kind of replacement for Coutinho, with the Serie A giants paying €11M for him, the Croatian is most comfortable as a deep lying playmaker. That could suggest that, should Kovacic arrive, Liverpool may seek to return to the diamond midfield—with a player whose main contributions are to the attack providing its base while Milner along with Jordan Henderson and Emre Can fill the shuttler roles.
A double-pivot alongside the energetic Can also seems possible, a destroyer-playmaker dynamic harking back to the days of Javier Mashcerano and Xabi Alonso, though given Can has so far looked best in a more box-to-box role, that would seem a set up that might limit the dynamic German. Whatever might happen, though, what is clear is that the 21-year-old Kovacic would be a very exciting signing.
Given the persistence of rumours surrounding Liverpool’s interest in him, and that those rumours are now being furthered by the Croatian press, it’s looking more and more like a deal the club might actually be able to pull off.
- Assistant's Short Liverpool Career Over as Colin Pascoe Gets the Sack
- Manchester City to Make £30m Verbal Offer for Raheem Sterling
- The Liverpool Offside End of Season Review, Part 5: Positioning the Club for Success in 2015/16
- Rodgers Staying Key to Milner Joining Liverpool
- Reports: Liverpool Target Bolton Wanderers Reserve Goalkeeper Adam Bogdan