You can never get off the ride. It goes up. It goes down. We’ve seen it go completely topsy-turvy a few times. It’s the roller coaster, tennis match-athon of football business. “You say that thing.” “We say this thing.” “You say money.” “We say nothing.” This time around the track it’s Liverpool target and Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud waving to us as we zip by.
It all began last summer with rumours that the German footballer was high on Jürgen Klopp’s “Yes, Please” list. And soon after, reports were out from the important people that Dahoud was definitely on the “Yes, Please” list but perhaps not exactly on the “OMG, Now” list.
Whatever it was, a transfer to Liverpool never materialized and since the start of the season we’ve been in a perpetual state of Is-It-If-Or-When?
The facts are thus: Dahoud has not signed a new contract with Gladbach. His current deal runs until summer 2018. And he has now been linked to both Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund. Head. Turn.
But, not so fast. Gladbach has a say in all this business, too. And their “We say this thing” is all about warding off any January suitors. Sporting Director, Max Eberl, is the man called upon to do the hammer drop while speaking with German magazine Kicker.
“There is a zero percent chance that Mahmoud will leave in January,” said Eberl.
“There is no offer for him on the table from any club and we have not had any offers for him in the past either.”
Maybe not offers, but there’s been contact for Dahoud. Eberl and Gladbach know of the mounting interest in Mahmoud and will be hoping to stave it off long enough to either get the maximum amount for a sought-after budding star or to convince him to stay.
“It is the club’s desire to extend his contract,” said Eberl. “We have not opened talks yet, but that will soon happen.
“We will have to consider our options if he only has one year left on his contract next year, but that is pure speculation at this stage.”
Liverpool are looking like a really good team again under Jürgen Klopp and the key has been unity. Klopp professes team spirit and togetherness but he also builds his team with players of optimal compatibility. He looks for characters he needs. He looks for attributes he needs. He’s looking for unity because that fosters confidence.
So, Mahmoud Dahoud is a player that has been identified as one who would be compatible. But, there are other players who have been identified that fit into Klopp’s vision, too. Dahoud may come to Liverpool or he may stay at Gladbach or he may go elsewhere. Jürgen Klopp and the work of the coaching staff is still the story here, for me.
We want the best players, yes. And we will get our fair few. But, Klopp is still the one who’s making the difference and whatever happens all through this maddening storm into January, stay anchored onto that.