After crunch talks, ‘very quick, very clever’ attacker likely to spend 21/22 at Anfield

After holding crunch talks with Liverpool upon his return from international duty, Neil Jones reports Takumi Minamino will ‘likely’ stay at Anfield.

At the end of May, Hampshire Live reported he was set to hold talks with Liverpool once he returned to pre-season.

Now that he’s back with the Reds in Austria for their camp, Goal journalist Neil Jones reports that he is likely to remain at the club this season.

UNSPECIFIED, AUSTRIA - JULY 19:(THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Joel Matip of Liverpool with Takumi Minamino of Liverpool during a training session on July 19, 2021 in UNSPECIFIED, Austria. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED, AUSTRIA – JULY 19:(THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Joel Matip of Liverpool with Takumi Minamino of Liverpool during a training session on July 19, 2021 in UNSPECIFIED, Austria. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

When the Reds signed Minamino, Jurgen Klopp was over the moon, telling Liverpoolfc.com: “Takumi is a very quick, very clever player, he finds space between the lines.”

I’m happy for the Japanese forward as he didn’t get enough time to prove himself at Liverpool before he left on loan.

Minamino didn’t exactly explode into life on loan with Southampton but he showed promise, scoring against Chelsea.

Had he stayed at Anfield, he could have started during Roberto Firmino’s dry spell or even ensured the Brazil international maintained his typically high standards.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - MARCH 10: Roberto Firmino of Liverpool FC reacts during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Burnley FC at Anfield on March 10, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom.
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND – MARCH 10: Roberto Firmino of Liverpool FC reacts during the Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Burnley FC at Anfield on March 10, 2019 in Liverpool, United Kingdom. (Photo by Alex Livesey – Danehouse/Getty Images)

Jones’ report isn’t confirmation that the Japan star will definitely stay at Liverpool this season but if he does and Liverpool cannot find a club to sign Divock Origi, it’s difficult to imagine where a new forward fits in.

The Reds need quality competition for Firmino and it’s fair to say that Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Origi and Minamino aren’t good enough backups.

I’ll happily eat humble pie at the end of the season if they end up being fantastic but Liverpool really can’t leave anything up to chance.

The thing is, if Liverpool can keep their starting XI fit for the entire season the way they did during their title-winning season, they should be able to win the Premier League again.

UNSPECIFIED, AUSTRIA - JULY 19:(THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool with Joe Gomez of Liverpool during a training session on July 19, 2021 in UNSPECIFIED, Austria. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED, AUSTRIA – JULY 19:(THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool with Joe Gomez of Liverpool during a training session on July 19, 2021 in UNSPECIFIED, Austria. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

With Virgil van Dijk back fit, the likes of Fabinho in the middle of the park and Mohamed Salah and co. firing in front of goal, the Reds could be unstoppable.

Last season, however, with the pandemic and injuries galore, we saw just how easily Jurgen Klopp’s master plan can be torn apart.

Hypothetically, signing Saul Niguez and Donyell Malen would give Liverpool the best chance of reinforcing their squad ahead of the 2021/22 season.

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

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