9 Mar 2017

Sign for Liverpool? 'Impressive' midfield sensation wanted by Klopp will cost £34m

Liverpool are currently linked with Atalanta holding midfielder Franck Kessie, but the Reds will have to pay through the nose to seal the deal.

In December, Sky Sports claimed that Liverpool were 'lining up a €27m January bid' for Kessie, but new reports this week suggest that Atalanta have slapped a massive £34m price tag on the coveted midfielder.

Liverpool have reportedly scouted 'impressive' Kessie 'extensively' this season (including at the AFCON) and when asked recently about speculation, he enthused:

"I'm flattered that clubs of this level are interested. This proves I'm having a good season. I don't know if my club has received offers. We'll see if we need to discuss anything".

Some info about Kessie, who is (lazily) nicknamed the 'New Yaya Toure':

* Defensive/holding midfielder, who can also play as a center-back. Contract expires: 2021

* Atalanta/Cesena: 15 goals/assists in 66 apps (One every 332 mins).

* Scouting Report (Strengths): "Large array of abilities. Excellent marking abilities. Good sense of positioning. Speed, stamina, power and technique. Excellent movement around the box".

* Scouting Report (Weaknesses): "[Prone to] dangerous tackles. Still a raw product that needs polishing in many aspects".

* Aug 2016: Kessie admitted: "I was close to joining Sunderland, but I preferred Serie A to the Premier League because in Italy it's possible to learn tactics".

* Oct 2016: Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini's assessment: "Technically, he [Kessie] has a good foundation and an impressive physical dominance. He can play one day at a big club".

* Oct 2016: On where he needs to improve: "I must improve tactically. I came to Italy for this reason. Here, a young guy learns more about the game, especially from a defensive perspective."

* Oct 2016: On his football role models: "My idols are Yaya Toure and [Michael] Essien. I have to work very hard to reach that level".

If contract rebel Emre Can leaves this summer, Liverpool will need a replacement, but is Kessie the answer? Maybe it's just me, but Kessie looks much older than 20 years old...




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