Liverpool supporters have been in high spirits in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their team ease past West Ham 4-1 at Anfield on Saturday to strengthen their grip on a top four place in the Premier League.
Jurgen Klopp’s men went into their clash with the relegation-threatened Hammers off the back of thumping Porto 5-0 in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie, all but booking their place in the quarter-finals of Europe’s elite competition. And the Reds look on course for earning a spot in next term’s competition as well as goals from Emre Can, Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, and Sadio Mane secured a comfortable victory for the Merseyside giants, who did move up to second in the Premier League table before Manchester United beat Chelsea on Sunday to reclaim that position.
Nonetheless, there have been many delighted Liverpudlians in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom are daring to dream about what their side could go on to achieve this term, given they have lost just one of their last 19 league matches.
And while this is likely to come as a blow to the Liverpool hierarchy, they must forget about the Germany international, and instead focus all their efforts on luring Tottenham’s Toby Alderweireld to Anfield.
And that’s because the £31.5 million-rated ace (as per Transfermarkt) has proven to be one of the best centre-backs in the Premier League in the last few years, and appears to be the ideal man to partner Virgil van Dijk in the heart of the Liverpool defence.
Ultimately, the backline remains and looks set to be what thwarts the Reds from seriously sustaining a Premier League title challenge, and while they spent a world-record fee landing van Dijk during the winter window, one man doesn’t necessarily make a defence.
Yet two men certainly could, and in Spurs centre-back Alderweireld, he could well be the man to help the Dutchman transform Liverpool’s defensive fortunes.
The 28-year-old performed brilliantly for Southampton back in the 2014/15 campaign to earn the move to Tottenham at the conclusion of that season, for whom he has since gone on to develop a formidable partnership with compatriot Jan Vertonghen, in turn becoming two of the best defenders in the division, and arguably the best centre-back pairing in English football.
Be it on the floor both in and out of possession, or aerially against some of the toughest strikers in the league, Alderweireld has proven adept at the lot, playing a key part in the best defensive record in the division last season.
The likes of Dejan Lovren, Ragnar Klavan, and Joel Matip have shown glimpses of promise in the Liverpool backline, but ultimately they have time and again let the team down through individual errors – clearly, they just aren’t good enough to take the Reds that one step further.
Yet Alderweireld appears to be that man, and with his Tottenham future hugely uncertain given the current contract stand-off, the Merseyside giants must pounce this summer – doing so would not only strengthen themselves, but it would also weaken Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs, another possible contender.
Thus, while missing out on Tah will likely be a blow to Klopp, the Liverpool boss and the club’s hierarchy must quickly forget about that setback, and now focus all their efforts on luring Alderweireld to Anfield.
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