Jurgen Klopp will regret allowing Chelsea to sign €44m ace unchallenged

Jurgen Klopp will regret passing up the opportunity to sign Hakim Ziyech from Ajax last summer when he would have suited Liverpool to an absolute tee.

Chelsea signed the 28-year-old from Ajax last summer for a reported €44m (£38.2m) but things have not gone according to plan since then.

Managerial turbulence at Stamford Bridge means that after just three months at the club, he experienced a change in head coach which is difficult for new players – especially after moving to a new country.

That said, I think a move to Anfield would have benefitted him. The Reds could have done with more creativity and he needs clinical forwards to feed on his pinpoint passing.

LONDON, ENGLAND – APRIL 17: Hakim Ziyech of Chelsea celebrates with teammate Timo Werner of Chelsea after scoring their 1st goal during the Semi Final of the Emirates FA Cup match between Manchester City and Chelsea FC at Wembley Stadium on April 17, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Charlotte Wilson/Offside/Offside via Getty Images)

In his final season at Ajax, the left-footed creator was directly involved in an incredible 29 goals – including 10 in the Champions League. His attacking contributions in Europe show that he’s not just a player that stat padded in the Eredivisie.

However, since moving to Chelsea, Ziyech has had a hand in just 9 goals. This is a drop off in productivity of 68%. Of course, he has also played fewer games with less stability as both Frank Lampard and Thomas Tuchel have had to experiment to find their best starting XIs.

Liverpool have a stable side under Jurgen Klopp and although he wouldn’t have started every single game at Anfield, he would’ve given the German the valuable ability to switch his system up with ease.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 21: Hakim Ziyech of Chelsea celebrates after scoring their side’s second goal during the Emirates FA Cup Quarter Final match between Chelsea FC and Sheffield Untied at Stamford Bridge on March 21, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Ziyech would’ve played a role at Anfield that would be similar to the one that Riyad Mahrez does at Manchester City even if it meant moving Mohamed Salah to centre-forward to make space for the Chelsea man on the right-wing.

Like Mahrez, Ziyech is blessed with a wand of a left foot and incredibly close control. This would allow Liverpool greater control and penetration when probing sides deep in the attacking third.

He has been urged to leave Chelsea by Marco van Basten, who, speaking to Ziggo Sport via Voetbalzone, said: “Ziyech again on the couch. When he gets in, that’s like a striker. He can do that too because he is just a good player. I am sad to see rotation… He’s just not in the right place.”

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

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