Liverpool want attacker as Firmino successor but Arsenal are ready to trigger his £60m exit clause

Liverpool want to sign Alexander Isak as a replacement for Roberto Firmino but Arsenal have already made contact with his agent.

Liverpool supporters will be the first to explain why Firmino is a special player but they will also admit that his levels have dipped considerably.

He scored 27 goals and assisted 17 more in 2017/18 which was easily his best season for the club but he managed just 9 goals and 9 assists this season.

BURNLEY, ENGLAND - MAY 19: Roberto Firmino of Liverpool celebrates after scoring their side's first goal during the Premier League match between Burnley and Liverpool at Turf Moor on May 19, 2021 in Burnley, England.
BURNLEY, ENGLAND – MAY 19: Roberto Firmino of Liverpool celebrates after scoring their side’s first goal during the Premier League match between Burnley and Liverpool at Turf Moor on May 19, 2021 in Burnley, England. (Photo by Martin Rickett – Pool/Getty Images)

Nothing is stopping him from bouncing back next term but it would be a bold move risking not signing a new forward this summer on the off chance he doesn’t reach his previous heights.

Alexander Isak to Liverpool?

Liverpool are tracking Real Sociedad ‘battering ram’ Alexander Isak, according to local newspaper Noticias de Gipuzkoa, who is viewed as a replacement for Firmino.

The Basque newspaper claims that Liverpool have been tracking Isak and have been really impressed by his form this season and want to sign him as a replacement for Firmino “in the not too distant future.”

His release clause is set at £60million which surely means that if Liverpool can’t negotiate a lower fee then they likely won’t be pursuing him.

SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 21: Alexander Isak of Real Sociedad scoring goal during the La Liga Santander match between Real Sociedad and Deportivo Alaves at Estadio Anoeta on February 21, 2021 in San Sebastian, Spain.
SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN – FEBRUARY 21: Alexander Isak of Real Sociedad scoring goal during the La Liga Santander match between Real Sociedad and Deportivo Alaves at Estadio Anoeta on February 21, 2021 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)

The situation is further complicated by a new report from AS which claims that Arsenal have made contact with his agent and are prepared to trigger his £70m exit clause.

Liverpool will surely succumb to Arsenal

Isak’s price makes signing him virtually impossible for Liverpool as they are quite stingy when it comes to the transfer market and as we have seen, they only spend massive sums to sign readymade world-beaters.

£75m for van Dijk was followed by £67m for Alisson but beyond those signings, Liverpool tend to stick below the £50m mark given the inherent risks involved in sanctioning huge outlays on players that aren’t fully proven.

There is the added risk of making marquee moves for players outside of the Premier League as we all know the speed and physicality of the English game can take some players by surprise.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 12: Naby Keita of Liverpool takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement prior to the Premier League match between Liverpool and Leeds United at Anfield on September 12, 2020 in Liverpool, England.
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 12: Naby Keita of Liverpool takes a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement prior to the Premier League match between Liverpool and Leeds United at Anfield on September 12, 2020 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Naby Keita is one such example.

While he has no issue with the speed of the game as he is more than capable of resisting the press, he has struggled hugely with the physical demand too much to handle.

There is still hope that he can overcome his injuries but Diogo Jota has shown why it can be wiser to pay slightly inflated prices to secure a proven Premier League talent.

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

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