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Rumor Mongering: Liverpool Need to Sell to Buy Timo Werner

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According to reports, Liverpool will need to part ways with players they were already likely to part ways with.

Manchester United v Derby County - Carabao Cup Third Round
Harry Wilson costs 5. Of any currency.
Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images

No one has any idea what the transfer market will look like when it reopens. Indeed, no one can know what it will look like, because no one knows the full financial implications of this ongoing coronavirus lock down.

Will most clubs become super conservative on the market, waiting to see what shakes out? Will some clubs identify and target good value for money? Will there be massive deflation? The answer to all of the above questions appears likely to be “yes,” but even that gives very little indication as to what the market will actually be like.

One move that seems more or less “nailed on” is Liverpool’s swoop of Timo Werner. That’s hardly a secret now. And because of his comparatively low release clause (or rather, what counted as low in the old market), the risk from Liverpool’s side is relatively minimal. And given how transfer deals are structured, usually over several seasons, the yearly output for such a transfer will be “doable” for a club like Liverpool.

None of this is new information, nor is it particularly exciting. What is exciting? Selling players to fund future expenditures! And that is the rumor we have today, courtesy of The Daily Star.

The players in question? Xherdan Shaqiri, Harry Wilson, and Marko Grujic. Even in old money, it’s hard to see the fees from selling these three players equaling one £50 million player. Now? That seems even more far-fetched.

Liverpool were always likely to try to move all three players on, regardless of other expenditures. Wilson and Grujic, in particular, have had multiple loan spells away from the club, and do not appear to be a part of Jurgen Klopp’s plans going forward.

Shaqiri, on the other hand, has struggled to maintain fitness at the club, despite contributing in some big moments in his two years as a squad player.

It wouldn’t be a good sign for the club, or indeed the wider world of football, if Liverpool needed to sell these players in order to fund the signing of Werner. Moreover, it could be very difficult to move these players on, especially with other clubs struggling and trying to come to terms with the new realities of the post-crisis market.

This is all to say that even if Werner comes in and these three players go out, this isn’t really “selling to buy” so much as “normal ins and outs” at the club. Or whatever constitutes normal these days.