Marko Grujic is on the verge of completing his £5.1m transfer to Liverpool. He’s currently on Merseyside having a medical, and Serbian outlet MozzartSport, along with a number of other Serbian publications, reckon he’ll actually stay with us instead of being loaned back to Red Star Belgrade.
This theoretically means Klopp will be able to call upon the 19-year-old in the next few weeks, with Liverpool set to play a League Cup semi-final with Stoke, a number of Premier League games and an FA Cup 3rd Round tie with Exeter.
Serbian journalist Vlastimir Stevanovic has outlined the player’s strengths and potential, and he really hasn’t held back – comparing him with three world renowned footballers.
“If I had to compare Marko Grujic to anyone in terms of style of playing, I’d compare him to Steven Gerrard,” the reported told Sky Sports.
He can play offensively, but he would also be great at playing a deeper role, much like [Paul] Pogba, which is actually how he plays at Red Star.
“He is very tall and strong so he’s great at aerial duels. He has excellent vision, a great passing game and he possesses great game intelligence.
“He is very highly rated, with some people calling him the greatest talent to come out of Red Star Belgrade since Dejan Stankovic.”
This praise is astronomical, but we have to remember that before Lazar Markovic signed for us in summer 2014, similarly hyperbolic statements circled – including one from Avram Grant which stated the only players he’d seen with more talent were Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi (via the Mirror).
What’s perhaps more interesting is that his Serbia Under-20 coach Zeljko Paunovic, who managed him during that sides World Cup triumph last June, reckons his long-term future won’t lie in central midfield – but in more attacking roles.
“He is a good lad with great mentality,” he began. “He’s not a born leader, but he’s not afraid to play big games.
“I think he is much more than a regular playmaker or attacking midfielder. He would be better suited as a winger or behind the striker.
“I think that he should play on the flanks and closer to goal.”
Grujic has scored five goals this term for Red Star Belgrade, who are a barbaric 26 points clear at the top of their domestic league. The teenager has played a big role in that, and with James Milner, Jordan Henderson and Jordan Rossiter currently struggling with injuries, he may have a serious role to play during the second half of the season.