On an unusually suspenseful, although ultimately uneventful, summer deadline day for Liverpool, one of the biggest names tossed about was that of Monaco’s Thomas Lemar. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder was being chased hard by Arsenal and Liverpool. Liverpool’s London-based rival for the Top 4 ponied up an impressive £92 million for the young French international after a £75 million Liverpool offer was rejected. However, they quickly withdrew the offer, likely due to an inability to come to personal terms with the player.
Now, according to French publication L’Equipe, Liverpool are interested in securing Lemar’s signature in the upcoming January transfer window.
Lemar is thought to be one of the potential long-term solutions to the eventual departure of Philippe Coutinho. Like with Coutinho and, for instance, Barcelona, Lemar is cup-tied in the Champions League, and would not be able to help Liverpool’s quest for #6. Unlike with Coutinho, Monaco are not only eliminated from the Champions League, but out of Europe altogether. Monaco currently sit third in Ligue 1, 9 points off the pace set by Paris Saint-Germain, and level on points with Lyon and Marseille.
Although Lemar could not participate in this Champions League campaign, he would likely find a good bit of minutes in the Premier League because of Klopp’s rotation. For Liverpool, this would be a great opportunity to bring in a potential replacement for Coutinho before the Brazilian is sold, likely in the summer.
If Liverpool are indeed pursuing him, it will be interesting to see what Lemar would cost in this market. His production is down from last campaign, scoring just 1 goal and adding 3 assists in a combined 1,043 minutes of league and Champions League action. Liverpool were reluctant to match Arsenal’s bid on deadline day, and perhaps this business savvy will pay off if they can get him on a reduced rate in January.