Liverpool have completed a £66m deal to sign AS Roma goalkeeper Alisson, their fourth signing of the summer – Naby Keita (£54m from RB Leipzig), Fabinho (£40m from AS Monaco), Xherdan Shaqiri (£13m from Stoke City). The Brazilian shot-stopper is the most expensive goalkeeper in world football but only the second-biggest signing made in 2018 after Virgil van Dijk joined from Southampton for £75m.
After previously targeting the best players of mid-level clubs to keep their spending at a reasonable level – Sadio Mane (£35m from Southampton), Georginio Wijnaldum (£25m from Newcastle United) – the Reds have drastically changed their buying policy to something more in line with Manchester City and Manchester United. So should their objectives also be the same?
Top-four not enough for Liverpool next season
Liverpool have finished fourth in the Premier League in their last two seasons – 76 points in 2016/17, 25 points in 2017/18 – and will need to perform considerably better given they boast the best attacking trio in the division. Last season, Sadio Mane, Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino scored 57 Premier League goals between them – 68% of Liverpool’s total.
And now Klopp has addressed the problems with their defence and goalkeeper, there’s no excuse for the Merseysiders not to challenge for the title. Manchester City have set the benchmark by winning the crown with 100 points from 38 games, but they won’t be so dominant this season. Liverpool, Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea have strengthened their squads and should be worthy competition for Pep Guardiola’s side.
Should Klopp’s job be on the line if they fail?
Liverpool haven’t finished higher than fourth in the Premier League table since Jurgen Klopp was appointed manager in 2015. In the last three years, Manchester City, Chelsea and Leicester City have won a title while Manchester United, Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal have finished second. The German coach hasn’t won a trophy since 2012, although he has been a runner-up in the Champions League (2012/13 & 2017/18), Europa League (2015/16) and League Cup (2015/16).
Liverpool fans will be very expectant after seeing their club land another big signing, but do they have the right man in charge to deliver success? Should Klopp’s position be under threat if they fall short this season? The Reds hierarchy have spent a lot of money to strengthen the squad and they will want something to come of it.
If the Merseysiders can make Alisson and van Dijk the world’s most expensive goalkeeper and defender, they have to deliver on the pitch. Klopp could live or die by these signings.