6 Feb 2017

Message to Klopp: 73% of fans want Liverpool to sell 'brilliant' €38m star ASAP

Should Liverpool sell Emre Can this summer?

Juve have reportedly sent scouts to watch Can several times over the last few weeks, and the transfer speculation is growing. In January alone, Can was linked with Juve three times:

* Sky Sports: "Juventus are eyeing a move for Emre Can...and are hopeful the [promise] of regular game-time could lure him to Turin".

* Tutto Mercato: "Can is not satisfied with how Jurgen Klopp is dealing with him, being mainly a substitute for Henderson and Wijnaldum, and might be tempted to join Juve".

* Corriere Dello Sport claimed that Juve remain determined to sign Can this summer.

What do Liverpool fans think about this, though? Last week, I conducted a poll asking fans if Klopp should sell Can, and the result is emphatic:

* 73% of participants voted YES to selling Can.

I voted yes, but to be honest, I have absolutely no problem with having Can in the team in the following circumstances:

* Played as a dedicated DM, and is the deepest of the three starting midfielders.

* Avoids stupid tricks and long Hollywood passes, and just keeps it simple. That means protecting the back four, and moving the ball quickly (via short passes) to more skilled players.

* Klopp reigns him in, demands discipline in the centre of the field, and specifically demands that he stop over-elaborating on the ball.

The problem here is (mostly) Klopp, not Can. It's obvious that his skillset is more suited the role of holding midfielder, but Klopp insists on playing him as a number 8 (i.e. the Gerrard role), which encourages Can to try and be more expansive with his game. Meanwhile, Jordan Henderson is shoehorned into the holding role, which wastes his passing ability and creativity.

As a comparison: Imagine if Rafa Benitez played Mascherano as an attacking midfielder and Gerrard as a DM; or Alex Ferguson played Roy Keane as the number-8, with David Beckham in a holding role. These would be utterly ridiculous decisions, but this is precisely what Klopp is doing with Can and Henderson.

Yes, Henderson can do a job in the holding role, but he can do a *better* job playing in the role that suits him best, and the same applies to Can.

^ Can: Recently hailed by James Milner as 'brilliant'. €38m-rated (CIES)


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