20 Mar 2016

Transfer Update: Liverpool want 'outstanding' £25m attacker who broke Bundesliga goal record

Earlier this month, Liverpool were linked with a move for Bayer Leverkusen star Karim Bellarabi, and new reports in German this week suggest that the £25m-rated attacker remains his on Jurgen Klopp's transfer wish-list.

According to German newspaper Sportbild:

"Leverkusen Stars are popular in England at the moment, and Karim Bellarabi is being watched by Arsenal, Tottenham, Liverpool and Man United".

When asked in October about a possible transfer, Bellarabi indicated that he is open to a move:

"This [leaving] is currently not an issue as I am very happy in Leverkusen. However, if I get an exceptional offer from someone, then I will consider it".

Some info about Bellarabi:

* 25-year old right winger, who can also play as a secondary striker, or on the left. Current contract expires: 2020.

* 26 goals/23 assists (49) in 111 games for Leverkusen (Goal every 313 mins/Goal/assist every 166 mins)

* Aug 2014: Broke the record for quickest goal in the Bundesliga when he scored after just 9 seconds against...Jurgen Klopp's Borussia Dortmund team.

* Oct 2014: After selecting Bellarabi for the German national team, Joachim Low raved: "Bellarabi has earned his chance after outstanding performance for his club. He is very strong in one-on-one situations and an outstanding alternative for our attack".

* Sep 2015: Leverkusen coach Roger Schmidt's assessment: "He [Bellarabi] is quick with the ball, but also without the ball, and he wins back a lot of possession for the team".

* Missed only 8 game through injury since 2013.

In my view, Bellarabi fits the profile of the kind of attacking player Liverpool need to sign: tall, strong, fast, rarely injured, and capable of providing genuine width (77% of games as a winger for Leverkusen).

Plus, as Schmidt states, he 'wins back a lot of possession for the team', which is something that will undoubtedly appeal to Jurgen Klopp.

However, a goal every 313 minutes is not that impressive; the Reds need consistent goalscorers from midfield, and it doesn't make sense to spend big bucks on a player with such a middling goal record.

Author: Jaimie K


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