Jurgen Klopp Could Repeat Szoboszlai Success in Liverpool Swoop for £15m “Defensive Battleship” in January

Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool team has shown impressive form this season, delighting their fans. However, Klopp understands the risks associated with potential injuries, especially given past experiences.

As the title race intensifies, with strong competition from Arsenal, Manchester City, and the unexpected contender Aston Villa, Liverpool performance remains commendable. Nonetheless, every team has areas to improve upon.

Last season, Liverpool fifth-place finish was attributed to their challenges in the transfer market. They failed to rejuvenate the squad adequately, leading to fatigue in the midfield within Klopp’s demanding system.

While some past concerns have been addressed, the club still recognizes the urgency for defensive reinforcements. Bayer Leverkusen’s Jonathan Tah could be the solution they are seeking.

Liverpool Transfer News – Jonathan Tah

According to a recent report by 90min, Liverpool are considering adding Tah to their list of potential signings during the winter transfer window. Jurgen Klopp, the Liverpool manager, is evaluating options for a No. 6 player and a defender. This defensive addition is seen as a response to Joel Matip’s injury, which ended his season earlier in the month.

For some time now, it has been anticipated that Liverpool would aim to sign a center-back in 2024. However, there is still uncertainty surrounding Klopp’s decision on when to make the move. The possibility exists that the club might choose to act at the end of the season when the player options are more abundant.

Recent indications suggest that a deal for Tah, who is 27 years old, might be finalized as early as January. 90min had previously hinted at this possibility. Reports from Germany further suggest that the Bundesliga’s leading team would be open to offers starting at €18m (£15m). Notably, Tah’s contract is due to expire in 2025.

Playing Style of Jonathan Tah

Reports from Europe indicate that Liverpool may not be alone in their pursuit of the Germany international. Premier League competitors Chelsea, Manchester United, and Tottenham Hotspur are also reportedly interested. It’s not surprising given the player’s availability at a reduced fee and his potential to enhance any progressive team.

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According to FBref statistics, Tah stands out among central defenders in Europe’s top five leagues. He ranks in the top 17% for goals scored, the top 3% for pass completion, and the top 17% for passes attempted. These figures emphasize his goal-scoring threat and his exceptional passing accuracy, qualities that would undoubtedly benefit any team, especially one based in Merseyside.

Liverpool rumoured centre-back targets for JanuaryLatest update
Piero Hincapie17th December
Goncalo Inacio17th December
Leny Yoro15th December
Ronald Araujo12th December
Maxence Lacroix8th December

The footballer earning £47k per week has been crucial for Xabi Alonso’s successful team this season. He has featured in 23 matches and managed to score four goals. Leverkusen, under Alonso’s guidance, have remained undefeated in all competitions so far. Furthermore, they currently hold a four-point lead over Harry Kane’s Bayern Munich in the German top-flight after playing 16 matches.

In the Bundesliga, according to Sofascore statistics, Tah has been in the starting lineup for 15 games. During these matches, he has maintained five clean sheets and successfully completed 94% of his passes. On average, Tah makes 5.9 ball recoveries and 4.0 clearances per game. Additionally, he has an impressive record of winning 79% of his aerial duels.

He may not be as aggressive in his passing as someone like Virgil van Dijk, with an average of only 0.1 key passes per game. However, this doesn’t diminish his outstanding qualities as a centre-back.

Why Liverpool Need Jonathan Tah

Matip’s season-ending injury due to a ruptured ACL has severely impacted his availability for the foreseeable future. This leaves the team heavily reliant on captain Van Dijk, who now primarily shoulders the defensive responsibilities. Accompanying Van Dijk in the backline are Ibrahima Konate and the young 20-year-old Jarell Quansah. Meanwhile, Joe Gomez, known for his versatility, has predominantly been deployed as a full-back this campaign.

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Tah’s defensive prowess is well-regarded in the football community. His former teammate, Christoph Kramer, once lauded him as a “defensive battleship.” This description aptly captures Tah’s combination of robust defensive abilities and technical acumen, making him a formidable presence in protecting his team’s goal.

Jonathan Tah: Similar Players
1Sven BotmanNewcastle United
2Pau TorresAston Villa
3Fikayo TomoriAC Milan
4Ronald AraujoBarcelona
5Andreas ChristensenBarcelona
*Sourced via Football Transfers

The table indicates that Tah is among Europe’s top ball-playing defenders. He would bring valuable composure to Liverpool’s team through his precise distribution and would bolster the defense with his physical strength.

Even if Konate continues to have a significant role under Klopp, Tah would be an excellent addition, both supporting and competing with Konate for a starting position.

Klopp has shown interest in recruiting from Germany, with Alexis Mac Allister being the sole summer signing not from the Bundesliga. There’s potential for Liverpool to pursue a similar deal like the one for Dominik Szoboszlai from RB Leipzig. Szoboszlai, who joined after his £60m release clause was activated, has been commended for his innovative playing style.

While Tah has a distinct style from Hungary’s captain Szoboszlai, he would come from a successful German team and could seamlessly fit into Liverpool’s lineup.

Last season, Liverpool faced challenges in midfield, but signings like Szoboszlai have helped stabilize and rejuvenate the team’s performance. Szoboszlai has made notable contributions in the Premier League with two goals and two assists, maintaining an 88% pass completion rate and averaging 1.7 key passes, 1.4 tackles, and 6.4 ball recoveries per game.

Crucial in Liverpool revival this season is evidence that Klopp’s approach to targeting the German market is effective.

It’s imperative for Liverpool to act swiftly. Tah’s reasonable price has attracted several interested parties. Given that the transfer window is approaching rapidly, Liverpool’s tradition of concluding deals early should be upheld in this instance.

In other Liverpool news, Alan Shearer Makes Liverpool Finish Prediction After Last Night’s Matches

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