5 Jul 2016

Liverpool Update: 'Extraordinary' £90k-a-week playmaker confirms he 'talked to Klopp' about £21m transfer

Over the last few years, Liverpool have been regularly linked with ex-Borussia Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan, and after his ex-boss, Jurgen Klopp, took over at Anfield, speculation over a transfer to LFC (predictably) went into overdrive. Alas, despite their close relationship, Gundogan chose to sign for Manchester City, and he's now revealed that Klopp played a big part in the final decision.

When asked over the weekend about his City transfer, Gundogan - who cost £21m - told reporters:

“Of course I talked to Jurgen Klopp. We discussed a few things. I asked if I would fit in the Premier League and he said 'definitely, definitely yes".

It's unclear whether Klopp tried to persuade Gundogan to sign for Liverpool, but given their mutual admiration (Klopp described Gundogan as 'extraordinary' in April), it's hard to believe that the subject of LFC didn't come up.

Hypothetically, if Klopp tried to convince Gundogan to sign for Liverpool, then why would he reject a move? In my view, the answers are obvious: the chance to work with Pep Guardiola, and the increased chance of winning trophies. The end result probably would've been the same even if Liverpool had qualified for the Champions League.

For £21m, Gundogan is clearly a massive bargain, and at the age of 25, his prime years are still ahead. Granted, he has a patchy injury history, but two major issue asides (400 days out during the 2013-14 season, and his current patella injury), Gundogan has rarely missed more than one game at a time.

Did Liverpool miss out? A couple of months ago, I conducted a poll asking fans whether Liverpool should sign Gundogan, and the results show a distinct lack of interest in the deal:

Whether Gundogan can excel in the Premier League remains to be seen, though. Much will depend on his ability to remain fit, and given the increased physicality of English football, I have a feeling he'll be another massive sicknote.

* Reportedly offered £90k-a-week at City.


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