From a Liverpool perspective, the upcoming transfer window needs to be about one thing, and one thing only: landing a top-quality centerback (or failing that, a centerback). The news about Joel Matip missing this next vital month only further highlights the ongoing problem at the back for the Reds.
Of course players and other clubs have their own agendas. And as we saw this summer, persistent and nagging news out of Spain can create a rather sizeable distraction.
In light of the Philippe Coutinho situation, and the rumors about Daniel Sturridge wanting to depart for greener pastures with more playing time, Jurgen Klopp was asked by The Mirror about possible departures in the January transfer window.
"I cannot give an answer for that now. A lot of things could happen,” the German manager explained.
“Maybe one or two players will tell me they want to make a move and go somewhere else. If that happens then we would have to consider that and make our decisions.
“As long as we have the opportunity to do something (sign someone) then we should think about it.”
This answer should not come as a shock to those familiar with Kloppo’s past handling of transfer rumors. Generally, the Liverpool boss gives a wide berth to such media hype about the incomings and outgoings.
However, the last sentence should be a key indication about the manager’s thinking headed into the window, especially when considering transfers that did or did not happen last time around. Why wouldn’t Liverpool negotiate on Coutinho? Because he felt the talented Brazilian could not be replaced in the window. It’s as simple as that.
The same logic will be applied this time, whether it’s a starting XI regular like Coutinho, or a frequent sub such as Sturridge. Danny might want to join a club with more guaranteed playing time to increase the odds of being called up to the 2018 World Cup, but Klopp will want to ensure that he brings in a striker with as much quality as Sturridge, a difficult proposition.