Fabrizio Romano: Liverpool landed ‘bargain’ of the summer with swoop for ‘incredible’ maestro

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Fabrizio Romano believes that Liverpool landed the biggest bargain of any club during the summer transfer window when securing Alexis Mac Allister.

The Argentine was the first of four midfielders signed by the Reds since the end of last season, joining from Brighton for an initial £35m at the start of June (BBC Sport).

Jurgen Klopp’s side had also been in pursuit of his former Seagulls teammate Moises Caicedo, who ended up signing for Chelsea for more than three times what the 2022 World Cup winner cost.

Speaking on the DeBrief podcast, and also shared on his eponymous Daily Briefing for CaughtOffside, Romano praised Liverpool not just for the astute acquisition of Mac Allister but also their midfield transfer activity as a whole over the summer.

The Italian wrote: “For the bargain signing of the summer I want to mention Alexis Mac Allister at Liverpool. They were dealt a blow with the Moises Caicedo and Romeo Lavia deals, which sent a negative message, but overall I think they did a very good job of rebuilding their midfield.

“It’s not easy to replace key figures like Jordan Henderson and Fabinho, but they have a real gem in Dominik Szoboszlai, and they got an underrated player in Wataru Endo on a cheap deal, Ryan Gravenberch as well, but for me Mac Allister for just €40m is something incredible.

“I think he’s a player worth more like €70-75m, but they got him for a lot less because of that verbal clause included in his Brighton contract.

“I think with Mac Allister, Szoboszlai, Endo and Gravenberch for a total of €160-165m, that’s a fantastic job to rebuild the Liverpool midfield – congrats to them because it was a big challenge.”

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We’d go along with Romano’s claim that Mac Allister may well be the bargain coup of the summer out of all 20 Premier League clubs.

For an initial fee of just £35m (and no more than £55m even after add-ons, as per BBC Sport), Liverpool have landed a 24-year-old World Cup winner who’d already proven his worth in the English top flight, hitting double figures in helping Brighton to qualify for the Europe for the first time ever.

Contrast that with the £115m Chelsea spent on Caicedo (The Guardian), or the Blues’ £58m outlay on Lavia (BBC Sport) – who’s yet to even make a matchday squad for his new club and has had just one season of regular senior football (Transfermarkt) – and it becomes clear that the Reds definitely got the best deal of the lot.

Even though Mac Allister had the misfortune to be sent off on his home debut for LFC – a decision so scandalous that the red card was swiftly overturned – he’s enjoyed an impressive start to life at Anfield, playing the number 6 role commendably in Sunday’s 3-0 win over Aston Villa.

With each passing week, the £35m spent on the Argentine looks more and more like one of the best pieces of transfer business executed by any club in the world in 2023. Even if Jorg Schmadtke doesn’t stay on Merseyside much longer, the sporting director can feel proud of that particular capture.

#Ep89 of The Empire of the Kop Podcast: EOTK Insider with Neil Jones🎙️

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