James Pearce has said that Liverpool’s failure to pursue alternative targets to Aurelien Tchouameni last summer has since come back to haunt the club.
As per Le Parisien, the midfielder had ‘discussions’ over a potential move to Anfield in 2022, but he opted to sign for Real Madrid instead once they came in for him.
Players in that position were conspicuous by their absence among the list of summer signings made by the Merseyside outfit, and the Reds are now paying the price for such inactivity with a difficult season which has left them struggling to finish in the top four of the Premier League.
In his latest mailbag for The Athletic, Pearce wrote: “My one concern last summer was the failure to strengthen the midfield department. I wrote at the time that was a major risk, and not pursuing a Plan B after missing out on Aurelien Tchouameni has proved costly.”
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The 23-year-old might not have too many regrets over his decision a few months ago, with his current club last week knocking the team he could’ve joined out of the Champions League.
However, Liverpool must rue missing out on the Frenchman, who publicly stated that the Reds had come in for him first before Real Madrid arrived on the scene (Le Parisien).
Tchouameni has earned an average performance rating of 6.95 from WhoScored this season. That would place him joint-sixth in Jurgen Klopp’s squad, with only one midfielder (Thiago with 6.96) achieving a higher score.
While that position has been the brunt of much criticism at Anfield in recent months, injuries have also made the manager’s life difficult when trying to select the best combination of players available to him in the middle of the park.
With his aforementioned observation, Pearce is voicing the frustrations felt by many Liverpool fans who would deem the failure to strengthen the midfield once the Frenchman had moved to Madrid as a serious oversight which has subsequently hampered the Reds badly.
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