Liverpool are wasting no time in adding further to their midfield after opening talks for the two players they want to sign next after Alexis Mac Allister, according to reports.
Mac Allister is due to undergo a medical with Liverpool after they activated a release clause in his contract with Brighton. He is now set to become their first summer signing – but more will have to follow if the club are to successfully reconstruct their squad.
Liverpool have slipped into the Europa League for next season after finishing fifth in the Premier League. To get back into the top four, one of their most important tasks this summer will be to invest in their midfield.
James Milner is heading in the opposite direction to Mac Allister to leave for Brighton on a free transfer. Also finding new clubs after their Liverpool contracts ended will be Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
And the less said about Arthur Melo after his loan spell from Juventus, the better!
Now, Liverpool are ready to equip Jurgen Klopp with a brand-new midfield. In addition to Mac Allister, they are ready to pursue two more signings.
And the pair they have entered talks for next are Kouadio ‘Manu’ Kone and Khephren Thuram of Borussia Monchengladbach and Nice respectively.
According to Football Insider, Liverpool are in preliminary contact with the representatives of the French pair. They have both been identified as ideal candidates to fit into Klopp’s system.
Having made their intentions clear to those managing Kone and Thuram’s careers, Liverpool would have to make appropriate bids to their respective clubs in order to bring them to Anfield.
Kone and Thuram are both under contract with their current teams until 2025. If they don’t renew their deals, this might be the best year for their clubs to cash in, since their values would drop a year before their terms would expire.
This season, Kone made 31 appearances for Borussia Monchengladbach, scoring one goal and adding an assist.
Meanwhile, Thuram – son of Lilian and brother of Marcus, who coincidentally has been playing for the same club as Kone – got two goals and eight assists from 48 appearances for Nice.
Despite that, Thuram is deemed to be the more defensive option of the pair. In theory, he could take over from Fabinho at the base of Liverpool’s midfield.
Then, Kone and Mac Allister could be the regular starters ahead of him, instead of current options like Thiago Alcantara and Jordan Henderson.
Those existing Liverpool players still have credit to their name, so will be useful to bring in as rotation options. But as the squad evolves for the future, players like Kone and Thuram – who are both 22 years old – might be able to take over.
It seems Liverpool’s midfield rebuild is starting to fall into place. For Klopp, it will be reassuring that the club are addressing those issues as early as possible in the summer window.
For now, the main focus will be on getting everything over the line for Mac Allister. But there might not be too long a wait after his arrival for further reinforcements to bolster the ranks to a bigger degree.