Blog by Jack Frankham (@LFCJack_):
After a rollercoaster season, Jürgen Klopp has his sights on a first Barclays Premier League title for Liverpool in over 27 years. Klopp's first season had been very eventful with his side having to focus on league games and also games in Europe, which was a difficult task. It was hard to get over a disappointing defeat in the Europe League final against Sevilla. Since then, Klopp has nailed down targets in certain positions, which need assessing. I'll go through what players he's targeting and what his side will look like.
Transfers are due to be told as the summer goes on, with left back being a main priority as Alberto Moreno had a frustrating season. Moreno doesn't seem to have a long-term future at Liverpool with him not adapting well to English football. FC Köln’s defender Jonas Hector has been targeted at left back. Hector is a nailed down start for both clubs and country and has triggered interested from Germany and England. Hector’s main assets are his composure, passing and defending, he’s been likened to Clyne but left footed on the other flank. Klopp should definitely target a player at Hector's ability because he needs players that have the willingness to run through walls for him and the team. He would certainly suit the Klopp philosophy with the high press and quick football. With Klopp targeting the 6’1” left back, Klopp likes a tall player with him addressing this to him and his staff and going out into the market early and getting Marko Grujic at 6’3” for a reported £5.1 million and Jöel Matip at 6’4” on a free transfer.
A controlling midfielder is a target with Jordan Henderson's future in doubt with Mahmoud Dahoud from Borussia Mönchengladbach being targeted. Dahoud registered 5 goals and 8 assists this season which is very impressive for a young lad at 18 years old, he has been valued around €30 million. The Reds seemly are ready to go into advanced talks with the German international with him being open to his options. His awareness to the game has been superb and can find space when under pressure, he takes many touches but can travel with the ball when needed. At his age he's very comfortable and a very special talent.
Dahoud is accustomed to playing at centre mid but has played in an attacking role many times. It's rumored that Klopp wanted Dahoud when he was 17 while at Dortmund but a fee couldn't be agreed. Klopp is a huge fan and if he does sign, he will fit in perfectly with Liverpool midfielder Emre Can. Emre anchoring the back four with Dahoud dictating play would be perfect for the system and the future with them both being in their early twenties.
Dahoud also has offers from German giants Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich which could be tempting with Dortmund and Bayern having Champions League football next season, it could be an advantage.
Mario Götze has been Liverpool's main target for a while and Klopp wants to be ruthless with the transfer and show intent. Götze has been under the spotlight lately with him rumored to be leaving. A deal looked done with Mario reportedly agreeing personal terms and Liverpool being in advanced talks to agree a fee. Since then it's gone quite.
In my opinion, Mario is currently focusing on the Euros with Germany. He would want to sort his future out after the tournament and play the 'long game'. I would think he's tying to collect his loyalty bonus and then join Klopp. Götze needs Klopp more than Klopp needs Götze. He needs Klopp to kick-start his career again, get games and be the main man and Klopp will certainly do that, no doubt. FC Bayern Munich clearly doesn’t want him because he isn't a major part in Carlo Ancelotti's plans for the future.
Sadio Mané is also a recent target that has had a lot of interest from Liverpool. Mané can play as a centre forward or as a winger on ether flank. His explosive pace is frightening for defenders and can be a huge difference to the attack with Firmino, Coutinho, Sturridge, Origi etc. It would add balance in attack and with only Jordan Ibe and Lazar Markovic being the only out and out wingers. This could definitely happen, Mané has the potential to be world class forward and Klopp can certainly turn him into one.
Klopp wants to build up from the back, already signing goalkeeper Loris Karius and Jöel Matip. He has his sights on Piotr Zielinski from Empoli and Mahmoud Dahoud; he also looks on to Mario Götze and Sadio Mané as attacking options. Mané and Götze are the main targets with Klopp having them in his sights for the summer. They're both valued around €30 million.
Klopp at Dortmund loved the 4-2-3-1 formation, that’s his philosophy. But at Liverpool, he has played many formations, mainly 4-2-3-1, 4-3-3 and 4-1-2-1-2 diamond with Sturridge and Origi up front. Klopp will keep his options open but will adjust his side to play a 4-2-3-1.
A long summer ahead for the Reds and Klopp, will he get it right?
Do you think he will?