Not two months have handed since Liverpool signed one Bayern Munich contract insurgent, and they’re already tentatively eyeing one other.
But lightning could not strike twice…may it?
There is little doubt at this stage that Liverpool are admirers of David Alaba. A source confirmed as much to on Monday; after beforehand ruling the Premier League out, he is once once more contemplating a move to England, and the Reds have already told him there can be an offer if he wants it.
The similarities with Thiago are clear. Like with the Spaniard, Hasan Salihamidzic has introduced nicely prematurely that Alaba can be leaving the club, and he would represent a comparable break from coverage – being a 28-year-old on excessive wages with a far-from-immaculate injury record.
There have even been issues, most notably from former keeper David James, that signing Alaba would represent short-term pondering from the Reds recruitment workforce – that it may have a destructive affect on the development of the younger stars rising on the shiny new AXA Training Centre.
If the arrival of Thiago taught us one factor, nevertheless, it is that exceptions can be made in distinctive circumstances. David Alaba obtainable on a free transfer? That’s distinctive.
It’s troublesome to see that he would push anybody down the ladder, notably with Joel Matip’s scenario worsening as the years progress. The Cameroonian was a much wanted regular hand in opposition to Manchester City, but has managed simply 16 appearances since Liverpool won the Champions League in 2019 – it is unclear how much longer he will be relied upon.
Signing Alaba, a always evolving player whose most recent forward stride has seen him emerge as a top centre-back, mitigates the plain issues his health record poses.
It’s doable that because of the Austrian’s immense versatility, he not often will get the credit score he deserves for his accomplishments in any given position. Prior to Hansi Flick’s tenure as supervisor, nevertheless, he was one of the best left-backs within the game, and while his move inside may have derailed that momentum, he as a substitute took a ropey Bayern defence by the scruff of the neck and impressed them to greatness.
He began 23 successive games at centre-back between November and April on their approach to the Bundesliga title, showcasing his management and organisational expertise in a run that yielded 19 wins. Their profitable Champions League run was a comparable story – Alaba played each single minute of their knockout games on the coronary heart of defence.
He was pivotal to the rebuild that recovered Bayern’s season on the drop of the hat, and it is easy to see the place Liverpool may benefit from his attributes. While he’s not essentially the most bodily imposing centre-back at 5’11, he makes up for that along with his positional means and velocity of thought.
He’s pocketed so many strikers who may have anticipated to have the better of him bodily – the imposing Wout Weghorst barely got a kick in 180 minutes in opposition to Bayern last season due to his marshalling of the back line.
Evidently, Alaba lacks the bodily presence of Virgil van Dijk, but he has most of the opposite attributes that have made the massive Dutchman the best on the earth at what he does. And he’s obtainable for free.
The query remains over the place he would fit into the first workforce, but trendy football is way more than a starting XI. Alaba would push the likes of Matip, Joe Gomez, and the host of youthful centre-backs coming up the rear of the first workforce, to be better.
And if a lack of minutes at centre-back are a problem, Jurgen Klopp is nicely conscious of what else Alaba presents. During his seven years at Borussia Dortmund, the German watched him line up at left-back, central midfield and even on the left wing – he’s a positional shape-shifter, making him a probably invaluable asset to a supervisor who wants to keep opponents guessing along with his workforce choices.
With James Milner being progressively phased out, it is even doable that Alaba may assume the position he once held – racking up regular minutes in varied positions relying on what is required on the time. ‘Utility man’ would not do it justice – Alaba could be Liverpool’s second best centre-back from the moment he steps within the door – but his dexterity and flexibility could be apparent belongings.
This is one of the needles within the haystack of transfer stories that simply is sensible. Alaba matches the jigsaw, fixing a number of issues for Liverpool in a single fell swoop. He’ll have lots of presents, so the Reds will have to move decisively, and shortly, in the event that they do want to carry him to Anfield.
Like his former Bayern teammate, nevertheless, Alaba stands on the fringes of ‘no-brainer’.