Liverpool could consider the sale of several key players to make Kylian Mbappe move feasible.
The Paris Saint-Germain forward, who is approaching the conclusion of his contract, is now eligible to negotiate pre-contract agreements with non-French clubs for the upcoming season. As part of his departure strategy from PSG, Mbappe has agreed to forgo a £69m loyalty bonus. Liverpool appear to be a favoured potential destination for the talented Frenchman.
After securing a 2-0 victory against Toulouse in the French Super Cup final, Mbappe commented: “I’m very, very, very motivated for this year. It’s very important. As I said, we’ve got titles to go after and we’ve already won one, so that’s already done. After that, no. I haven’t made up my mind yet. But in any case, with the agreement I made with the chairman this summer, it doesn’t matter what I decide.
“We managed to protect all parties and preserve the club’s serenity for the challenges ahead, which remains the most important thing. So we’ll say it’s secondary.”
Mbappe’s potential move to Liverpool comes with a hefty price tag, as he commands an annual salary of £62m. This figure is more than three times the earnings of Liverpool’s current top earner, Mohamed Salah, as reported by spotrac.com.
Who Could Liverpool sell to Make Room for Mbappe?
Mohamed Salah – £18.2m
Salah joined Liverpool for a fee of £34m in June 2017. He secured his first Golden Boot in the subsequent season.
Although Salah stands as a crucial figure for Liverpool, acquiring Mbappe could fill the void his potential departure might create. Reports have connected Salah with a transfer to the Saudi Pro League since the previous summer. His current annual salary stands at £18.2m.
To bring Mbappe on board, Liverpool might need to part ways with their star player, Salah. However, covering Mbappe’s hefty £62m wage would require Liverpool to make further significant sacrifices.
Virgil van Dijk – £11.4m
Van Dijk is the second-highest earner at Liverpool, commanding a salary of £11.4m. He holds the unique distinction of being the only defender to have ever won the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year Award. However, since suffering a severe knee injury in 2020, he has displayed a decline in form that kept him out of action until the subsequent season.
Given the circumstances, Liverpool might consider parting ways with the centre-back if it facilitates their pursuit of signing Mbappe.
Thiago Alcantara – £10.4m
Thiago, sidelined due to injury this season, is likely a prime candidate for Liverpool’s changes. The 32-year-old managed just fourteen Premier League starts last season and has had limited playtime since joining in 2020.
Diogo Jota – £9.4m
Jota, a top earner at Liverpool, frequently rotates positions with Darwin Nunez and Luis Diaz. Diaz has started fourteen Premier League matches this season compared to Jota’s eight. Despite Jota’s promising performances, like Thiago, Liverpool may not fully utilize him enough to warrant his salary.
Joel Matip – £5.2m
Matip plays a crucial role in Liverpool’s defensive strategy when he is in good health. However, his frequent injuries have restricted his contributions this season. Since October, the 32-year-old defender has been sidelined due to a knee problem.
His return isn’t anticipated until mid-May. Given these circumstances, Liverpool might benefit from reallocating resources to enhance their prospects of signing Mbappe during the upcoming summer transfer window.
Adrian San Miguel del Castillo – £3.1m
Recently, Adrian’s role at Liverpool has diminished, especially with Caoimhin Kelleher, a more economical option, stepping up as the preferred backup when Alisson Becker was sidelined in early December.
Considering Adrian’s salary is almost tenfold that of Kelleher’s, it might be prudent for Liverpool to consider parting ways with the Spaniard.
Is it worth it for Liverpool?
In July, amid rumors of Mbappe possibly joining Liverpool, manager Jurgen Klopp stated to Sky Germany: “We laugh about it. I can say that I think he’s a really good player, but the financial conditions don’t suit us at all.
“I wouldn’t like to ruin the story now, but as far as I know, there’s nothing to it.”
To acquire the superstar, Liverpool may need to make significant compromises. However, given the aging roster and potential departures of several players, it’s a proposition worth exploring. On Sunday, Liverpool faces Arsenal in the FA Cup’s third round, with the match starting at 4:30pm on BBC One.