Liverpool supporters have been despondent in the Transfer Tavern in the last few hours after seeing their side go down 1-0 to the Premier League’s bottom club Swansea City on Monday night, thus bringing to an end their team’s 18-match unbeaten run.
Jurgen Klopp’s men went into their clash in South Wales off the back of beating Manchester City 4-3 in their last league outing, and as such would have gone to the Liberty Stadium full of confidence and expecting to keep their unbeaten streak going. However, the Reds produced a woeful display and were deservedly beaten thanks to Alfie Mawson’s clinical strike just before half time, in turn sealing a much-needed three points for Carlos Carvalhal’s side, at the same time denting Liverpool’s top four ambitions.
Subsequently, there have been several frustrated Liverpudlians in the Tavern in recent times, many of whom are hoping Monday night was nothing more than a blip and normal service will be resumed against West Brom in the FA Cup this weekend.
In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident Reds fans to discuss, not least recent reports suggesting their team have yet to make contact with the representatives of Roma goalkeeper Alisson about a possible move to Anfield.
But with the Merseyside giants clearly in need of a goalkeeper, it’s a deal they simply must seek to get done, as landing the £14.4 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) would be a bigger signing for the club than that of centre-back Virgil van Dijk.
Without doubt, the addition of the Netherlands international a few weeks ago will serve to improve the Liverpool backline, a backline that has too often made basic errors and ultimately cost the team points in the last few years.
Yet much of that can also be pinned down to the goalkeeping situation at Anfield, with both Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius doing little in their Reds career so far to suggest that either of them can be the shot-stopper they need to compete for the Premier League title.
If one takes a look back at the winning teams of the past few years, all of them have outstanding goalkeepers who have, at times, single-handedly won their club points, be it Petr Cech and Thibaut Courtois at Chelsea, or David De Gea at Manchester United.
And one could well argue that the arrival of Ederson at Manchester City in the summer, a calming influence in goal who plays the way Pep Guardiola wants to play but is also an excellent shot-stopper, has been as big an influence in their success this term as anybody.
Yet neither Mignolet or Karius are in that league of goalkeepers – arguably, the two of them have actually cost Liverpool points over the years as opposed to winning them – yet Alisson certainly appears to be.
16 clean sheets in 41 matches for Roma is an outstanding return, and when one concedes fewer than a goal a game (he’s shipped 40 in those matches), one is evidently a very handy goalkeeper.
And, as appears to have happened at City, bringing someone in like that can inspire confidence in the back three or four in front of them, so while Van Dijk’s addition is certainly a good one, you wonder whether the Dutchman will only ever be as good as the goalkeeper behind him.
Ultimately, Van Dijk’s introduction in that backline isn’t immediately going to make Liverpool the defensive unit they need to be to challenge for the Premier League – they will be better, but more work will be needed.
But landing Alisson could make that difference, which is why bringing the Brazil number one to Anfield, either this month or in the summer, would be a bigger signing for the Reds than that of Van Dijk.
Liverpool fans… what do you think? Let us know!Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!