Journalist Duncan Castles has claimed that Jurgen Klopp is personally looking into Yves Bissouma as a potential transfer, with Gini Wijnaldum’s Anfield future still up in the air.
The Brighton midfielder has been heavily linked with a move to the Reds, following speculation around Barcelona’s interest in the Liverpool man.
“I think if you look at Liverpool, it’s clear that Bissouma is being thought of as an option to replace Gini Wijnaldum if he leaves at the end of the season. He’s a similar type of player, he performs a similar type of role, he’s much younger,” Castles told The Transfer Window podcast (via HITC). “My understanding is that Klopp has done some work to ask questions about Bissouma to people who know him well, which suggests that this is something Liverpool have on a potential list of replacements.”
“Obviously they want to retain Wijnaldum, and I think there’s a good chance that eventually they’ll be able to secure a new deal for Wijnaldum,” the journalist added. “Again, we’re talking about a Covid market – limited cash for these big contracts that players like Wijnaldum are looking for. Liverpool can say ‘this is a place that has worked well for you, where you’re winning trophies, why change it?'”
With the No.5 yet to offer the Liverpool hierarchy some form of answer on the latest offering of terms, the club will likely already have some vague list of targets drafted (we imagine) should the worst come to pass.
As a box-to-box midfielder, Bissouma would have to convince Klopp that he was capable of more than just successful dribbles and accurate passing.
Replacing Wijnaldum – an eventuality we hope the German coach won’t have to address – will be no easy fix, particularly due to the fact that his value to the club isn’t easily quantifiable.
The 30-year-old is extremely press-resistant with excellent ball-retention skills that make him a vital part of Liverpool’s build-up play; on top of that, any incoming player would ideally have to be resistant to injury.
Bissouma has shown he bears some similar traits to the former Newcastle man, but we’d imagine Klopp would have his hands full to mould the Malian into the type of player he’d need, if Gini were to leave at the end of the season.