Liverpool are reportedly in a battle with Bayern Munich to sign Borussia Monchengladbach star Denis Zakaria as they look to beef up their midfield options.
The Reds are fresh off a dominant Carabao Cup semi-final win over Arsenal which saw the Gunners beaten 2-0 thanks to a brace from Diogo Jota, who has made a habit of scoring against the North Londoners.
However, due to injuries and AFCON, Jurgen Klopp’s midfield options are very limited and the German was forced to field a trio of Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and Curtis Jones.
It must be said, however, that Fabinho and Jones were excellent on and off the ball while Henderson offered very little when in possession but his work-rate out of possession was excellent.
Liverpool make ‘serious approach’ to land soon-to-be free agent Zakaria
According to ESPN, Liverpool, Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich are the ‘frontrunners’ to sign the Swiss star this month and the Reds could sign him for a very low fee if previous reports are to be believed.
The 25-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season and has made it clear that he has no intention of signing a new deal and so the vultures are circling.
His agents have held talks with some of the biggest clubs in Europe, ESPN reports, but it’s noted that Liverpool, Dortmund and Bayern have made the “most serious” approaches.
Gladbach are willing to let him leave this month to avoid missing out on collecting a fee but it’s a risky move as they’re 12th in the Bundesliga and are just 4 points clear of the relegation zone.
A report from Sport Bild in mid-December claimed that Gladbach would be willing to sell for around £6m which would be an absolute bargain for the 25-year-old even if he is free to leave the club in less than 6 months.
The report continues: “The player’s camp are negotiating with a view to making a move in January but are also happy to wait until the end of the season if necessary.”
Liverpool have taken the lead over Man Utd in the race to sign Zakaria an ESPN source claims that “uncertainty at United, with interim coach Ralf Rangnick only in place until the summer, has counted against them.”
Zakaria could solve Liverpool midfield woes and replace Wijnaldum perfectly
It’s a bit annoying to still be banging on about replacing Georginio Wijnaldum 8 months on but not replacing him was a risky move and it could genuinely cost Liverpool silverware this season.
The Dutchman was so important when it came to protecting Liverpool’s back four when in transition and so it should come as no surprise that the Reds have conceded an alarming number of goals in transition this season.
Zakaria would help replace the valuable traits that Gini brought to the table but he’d also be a threat for the Reds on the counter-attack and most interestingly, at least to me anyway, is that he is a genuine threat from outside the box.
Whether by design or by accident, Klopp’s players hardly ever shoot from range and that might change with Zakaria in the side.