Why Liverpool Did Not Spend as Much as Their Title Rivals

Liverpool have had a relatively quiet transfer window in comparison to other title rivals. We’ve seen Manchester City splash out on Jack Grealish,  signing him from Aston Villa; Chelsea have re-signed Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan for just shy of £100 million; Manchester United brought in Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and club legend Cristiano Ronaldo.

Jurgen Klopp’s side, meanwhile, signed just highly-rated Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig. This was for his release clause of £36 million at the start of the summer. There have been numerous outgoings from the club, with the likes of Harry Wilson, Taiwo Awoniyi, Xherdan Shaqiri and Marko Grujic all moving on for transfer fees, while Georginio Wijnaldum signed for Paris Saint-Germain when his Liverpool contract expired this summer for free.

Why Liverpool Did Not Splash the Cash This Summer

Money Not There

There have been plenty of rumours flying around, as you’d expect in any summer window. Yves Bissouma, Saul Niguez, Renato Sanches, Florian Neuhaus, Adama Traore, Luis Suarez and Ismaila Sarr have been linked to the club. Ties to Kylian Mbappe, though, are a bit more hopeful than realistic given that PSG have turned down over £180 million for their French superstar from Real Madrid. All of these names turned out to be just rumours, as Liverpool made no official no bids.

On the face of it, you’d still think Liverpool would have plenty of money to spend. They recently re-joined the world elite after triumphs in the Premier League and Champions League. In recent years there have been expansions to Anfield, with plans for further expansion in place, as well as a brand new training facility being built. All of this will cost huge amounts of money. Not to mention the club reported a loss in media, matchday and commercial revenue streams up until May 31, 2020, equating to £46 million. So that only covers the very start of the Covid pandemic and doesn’t account for the months that followed where the club will have made more losses with empty stadiums etc.

Liverpool have still conducted vital transfer business when it comes to extending the contracts of key players. Alisson, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Virgil van Dijk, Andy Robertson, Fabinho and captain Jordan Henderson have all signed long-term deals with the club. This won’t be free, and not only does this more than likely increase the wages of a number of high profile players, but no doubt there are signing bonuses, loyalty bonuses and agent fees to be paid. It’s not long ago that the club were paying the most agent fees in the league.

Taking this spending into account, it is understandable that the club has limited new signings. Owners Fenway Sports Group want to make the club self-sustainable, meaning that it wouldn’t be possible to match the big-spending of rivals, given the financial outgoings at the club coupled with recent losses. FSG saved Liverpool from administration in late 2010. This means the drive to be self-sustainable is a sensible one for the future of Liverpool. Unfortunately, transfer fees are not the sole outgoings.

Are Liverpool Still a Few Players Light?

Roberto Firmino will miss three months through injury, a big blow to Liverpool. Diogo Jota, Mo Salah and Sadio Mane will likely make up the front three. Cult hero Divock Origi is in reserve with Takumi Minamino. Five players battling it out for three positions is reasonable, especially with Firmino likely back before Christmas. The problem the Reds will face in attack is they will be without Salah and Mane in January. The pair will jet out to represent Egypt and Senegal respectively at the African Cup of Nations. This could potentially leave Klopp an attacker light in an ideal world.

Other areas Liverpool could potentially have strengthened are cover for Alexander-Arnold and a Wijnaldum replacement. When it comes to the right full-back position, you’d expect the Englishman to start the majority of games for Klopp’s side given his ability and importance to the way Liverpool play. If something were to happen to him, the German boss will have youngster Neco Williams to call upon, as well as Joe Gomez and utility man James Milner. The exciting Harvey Elliott returned from loan at Blackburn Rovers. Although naturally a wide player, Elliott slotted into the Liverpool midfield, not looking out of place. So not necessarily a new face through the door, but he adds to Klopp’s midfield options for the upcoming season.

 

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