Benfica defender Andre Almeida has said that he is open to the idea of potentially moving to Liverpool at some point in his career.
The 29-year-old told Portuguese radio station Mega Hits [via Sports Mole] that he has long dreamed of a move to the Premier League and he cited the Merseysiders as a club that he likes “for their history“.
Almeida, who has four years left on his current Benfica contract according to Sports Mole, added that he also has a fondness for Real Madrid and Barcelona but would prefer to play in the Premier League. [as per MegaHits, via Sports Mole]
Almeida, who plays mainly as a right-back but has also frequently operated at left-back and defensive midfield, has made 251 appearances for Benfica, scoring six goals and providing 35 assists (one every 7.17 games). [via TransferMarkt.co.uk]
He was an abundant creative outlet for the club last season, setting up 12 goals in 33 league games (one every 2.75 games) and averaging 1.2 key passes and 0.8 crosses per game. Defensively, he won 3.2 aerial duels and 1.8 tackles per game, with a match average of 1.2 interceptions.
Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold, who featured in 40 games in total last season, also ended the campaign with 12 league assists, racking up the total in just 29 matches (one every 2.41 games).
The 20-year-old seems to offer a greater attacking threat than Almeida, with averages of 1.7 key passes and two crosses per game last season. In the early weeks of this campaign, he is averaging 3.5 key passes per match. [via WhoScored.com]
However, Alexander-Arnold’s defensive contribution has dipped this season. Having averaged 2.1 tackles and 1.2 interceptions per game in 2o18/19, he is currently hitting match averages of just 1.3 tackles and 0.8 interceptions. [via WhoScored.com]
The youngster is currently the only natural right-back available to Jurgen Klopp, with Nathaniel Clyne facing at least six months on the sidelines (according to the Liverpool Echo) after a cruciate ligament injury in pre-season.
Joe Gomez played at right-back in the Super Cup against Chelsea last month but had a shaky night in Istanbul, succeeding with only 44% of his tackles, being dribbled past five times and losing the ball three times.
Even though Almeida turned 29 this week, Klopp has previous in bringing in experienced players at Liverpool.
James Milner was 29 when he signed from Manchester City and has made 181 appearances for the Reds. Ragnar Klavan was 30 when he came to the club in 2016. This summer, Klopp brought in two veteran goalkeepers in Adrian (32) and Andy Lonergan (35).
Also, with Liverpool lacking in right-back cover and Alexander-Arnold still having room to improve some aspects of his game, the experienced, versatile and defensively solid Almeida would make an ideal transfer target for the Reds.
Liverpool fans, do you think Almeida would be worth pursuing after declaring his interest in moving to England? Share your views in the comments section below!
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