Arsenal in pole position to sign ace for key reason; Liverpool had meeting with his agent

Liverpool have made contact with Brighton over signing Yves Bissouma but he doesn’t want to move up North and Arsenal are now favourites to sign him this summer.

Georginio Wijnaldum has joined Paris Saint-Germain and while I believe his replacement is actually Thiago Alcantara based on the end to the 2020/21 season, Liverpool still need to sign a new midfielder.

Yves Bissouma is my first choice. He’s got a little bit of everything. From strength to his underrated flair, the Malian would be a fantastic player under Jurgen Klopp but as things stand, it’s unlikely he joins Liverpool.

What is the Bissouma news?

After a meeting with his agent, Liverpool were told that Brighton will demand around £50m for his signature and as a result, the Reds cooled their interest. The Seagulls aren’t under any financial pressure to sell and so hold all the cards.

Despite multiple talks with his agent and recent contact with the south coast outfit, the player, who was allegedly an Arsenal fan as a kid, prefers a move to North London.

SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - MARCH 14: Ibrahima Diallo of Southampton and Yves Bissouma of Brighton & Hove Albion during the Premier League match between Southampton and Brighton & Hove Albion at St Mary's Stadium on March 14, 2021 in Southampton, England.
SOUTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – MARCH 14: Ibrahima Diallo of Southampton and Yves Bissouma of Brighton & Hove Albion during the Premier League match between Southampton and Brighton & Hove Albion at St Mary’s Stadium on March 14, 2021 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Robin Jones/Getty Images)

That said, it would be a mistake to let the Gunners sign a player that is so obviously the perfect fit for Liverpool. I wrote more about this earlier this week.

A report from 90Min suggests that Arsenal are in the driving seat to sign Bissouma and cite his “unwillingness to move so far north” as the main factor in the Londoners being in a strong position to sign him.

Liverpool have been linked with a move for Florian Neuhaus, with news breaking in his homeland on Friday. Reports claim that talks have been held about taking him to Anfield but developments aren’t expected until he returns from the EUROs.

Liverpool MUST sign Bissouma

In the grand scheme of things, £50m isn’t an unearthly amount of money but I think not signing him would be a major regret. The former Lille dynamo has all the tools that you’d expect of a Wijnaldum replacement.

Brighton's Ivorian midfielder Yves Bissouma (3rd L) shoots to score their second goal during the English Premier League football match between Everton and Brighton Hove and Albion at Goodison Park in Liverpool, north west England on October 3, 2020.
Brighton’s Ivorian midfielder Yves Bissouma (3rd L) shoots to score their second goal during the English Premier League football match between Everton and Brighton Hove and Albion at Goodison Park in Liverpool, north west England on October 3, 2020. (Photo by PETER BYRNE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

If Liverpool want to sign someone with Premier League experience and a high ceiling on his potential, Bissouma is the best option.

Youri Tielemans has been heavily linked with an Anfield switch as well but he’ll cost quite a bit more than the £50m that Michael N’Cho, Bissouma’s agent, told Liverpool that Brighton are demanding.

Much like Wijnaldum, the Mali international gives Jurgen Klopp several options. Not only is he a fantastic no.8 with the ability to get up the pitch and score goals but he can also shine as a no.6.

Wilfred Ndidi, widely considered as one of the best tacklers in the world, made 96 tackles in the Premier League this season while Bissouma made 104.

Crystal Palace v Brighton & Hove Albion - Premier League
LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 09: Yves Bissouma of Brighton and Hove Albion battles for possession with Wilfried Zaha of Crystal Palace during the Premier League match between Crystal Palace and Brighton & Hove Albion at Selhurst Park on March 09, 2019 in London. United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

This is more than even N’Golo Kante (76).

What would Liverpool look like if they signed Bissouma?

Liverpool are famous for their pressing high up the pitch and while the intensity of their counter-pressing has dipped since the end of the 2018/19 season, it’s still a key trait of their style of play.

This is important to note because Bissouma is superb at pressurising opponents and once he has it, he is brilliant. He can shoot from range, wriggle out of tight areas but can also drive through the engine room with ease.

He’s the complete package and I think not signing him would be a huge mistake. He’s still only 24 and is yet to enter his peak and signing him now would see his golden years spent at Anfield.

Michael Mongie
Football Central Media Group founder, owner and editor.

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