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Rumour Mongering: Klopp and Wagner Plotting Harit’s Next Step

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The Moroccan playmaker has been the centrepiece of Schalke’s offense this season.

FC Augsburg v FC Schalke 04 - Bundesliga Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images

As Liverpool sit eight points clear of the Premier League table, and the January transfer window lurks just seven weeks away, the big topic during this characteristically quiet international break has been exactly what magnitude of moves Pep Guardiola and his reigning league champions will be preparing in order to make up the gap in the second half of the season.

Less prominent has been any serious discussion about whether or not Jürgen Klopp will add to his squad in the new year. With a first league title in 30 years firmly in their own hands, many fans are wondering if this would be the time for the Reds to do some mid-season spending in order to further strengthen their position, but beyond a light — though exciting — sprinkle of Timo Werner, the rumour front has been dreadfully quiet.

Enter Corriere dello Sport, that bastion of integrity in sports journalism, who are claiming that Jürgen Klopp is plotting to relive his old friend David Wagner of his most important player. Amine Harit is currently in the midst of his best-ever season, notching five goals and assisting two as he’s lead die Knappen to seventh place in a remarkably tight Bundesliga.

A hard-working attacking midfielder with quick feet and a preternatural ability to squirm his way out of tight spaces, the 22-year old is for all intents and purposes an Adam Lallana surrogate, and with the former Southampton man’s contract running out in the summer, getting a replacement in early seems more than reasonable.

The counter-argument, of course, is that Liverpool already have two players capable of doing Lallana things in €100m duo Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keïta, and that despite his hot start to the season and persistently spectacular ability to draw a foul — he has been the BuLi’s most frequently fouled player for three years running — Harit has not performed at this kind of level with enough consistency that he should be considered for a move to the reigning Champions of Europe.

Considering the €20m price tag and the existing friendship between Klopp and Wagner, there are a number of reasons this deal could take place, but with depth at fullback and along the forward line a more immediate need, it would be somewhat surprising if a move for Harit were to be prioritised this winter.