Goodbye, Andre: Liverpool shift focus to tireless 20-year-old with ‘high football IQ’

Following Tuesday’s bombshell news that Liverpool have ended their long-standing interest in Andre Trindade, another defensive midfielder closer to home has now appeared on the Reds’ radar.

According to journalist Francois Plateau, Jürgen Klopp’s team are showing “serious interest” in Red Bull Salzburg’s Lucas Gourna-Douath ahead of the January transfer window.

Several former players from the Austrian club have gone on to play at Anfield later in their careers, including Sadio Mane, Naby Keita, Takumi Minamino and Dominik Szoboszlai, and the 20-year-old Frenchman could potentially be the next man on that list.

Standing just over six feet tall, Gourna-Douath has a commanding presence at the base of midfield and has won 2.73 aerial duels per game over the last 12 months, placing him in the top 4% of positional colleagues in Europe for that benchmark (FBref ).

Football talent scout Jacek Kulig highlighted some of the youngster’s most outstanding qualities, including a “high football IQ and maturity” that combines “athletics and excellent technical skills” and is a “tireless runner with an exemplary work rate”.

These are all qualities that Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool fans will surely like; while with Salzburg he is already playing at a high level in the Champions League group stage.

Even with the Reds signing four midfielders in the summer transfer window, it’s still clear this season that we needed a truly reliable defender in the number 6 role, rather than trying to fit Alexis Mac Allister into that position.

With Andre’s pursuit suddenly halted, it seems Gourna-Douath could be worth investigating and possibly receiving a nice offer ahead of the January transfer window.

Brazilian press release with big update on Andre’s links with Liverpool and Fulham

Liverpool were heavily linked with a move for Fluminense midfielder Andre during the January transfer window, but a major new update has now emerged.
Liverpool linked with Andre

The Reds may have further strengthened their midfield this summer by offloading several prominent names such as Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita and signing Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Wataru Endo and Ryan Gravenberch, but that doesn’t mean not to say that they did it. Matters in this area are not yet over.

Mac Allister has struggled in the number 6 position at times this season, struggling with a lack of pace and physicality, and it could be argued that a more natural defensive midfielder is needed to compete with the former Brighton -Man allows you to move higher on the ground.

Andre has been linked with a move to Liverpool on several occasions in recent months, with a summer move failing to materialize after committing his future to the Brazilian side for the remainder of 2023.

It seems almost certain that the 22-year-old will leave this winter, having won the Copa Libertadores title last weekend, and the Reds were seemingly favorites to sign him all along.

However, the situation now appears to have changed, which could be a real problem for Jurgen Klopp as he looks to inspire his side to a real Premier League title challenge in the 2023/24 season.
Fulham are now favorites to sign Andre

According to a new transfer update from UOL [via Sport Witness], Liverpool have been dealt a major blow in their attempt to sign Andre from Fluminense, as Fulham are no longer the best candidate for their man.

The Cottagers have emerged as England’s ‘strongest candidate’ to sign the Brazil international and he is even described as a ‘priority target’ for the west Londoners.

Andre is seen as someone who could fill the potential void left by Joao Palhinha should the Portuguese star move to Bayern Munich in January.

Liverpool are believed to have sent scouts to watch the South American beat Boca Juniors in the Copa Libertadores on Saturday, but it doesn’t appear he is as strong a target as he once was.

It is claimed the Reds and Arsenal could now pull the plug and consider other options, with Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz mentioned as an option for the Gunners, but no specific new targets for Liverpool are mentioned.

Missing Andre now would be a huge blow for Klopp. Although he is not necessarily an overall number 6, Andre has more dynamism and defensive experience than Mac Allister, suggesting that he could be a brilliant signing for many years to come.

However, if he were to suddenly exit the game, it is important that Liverpool look for an alternative to the Fluminense ace, with Mac Allister an excellent player at number 8, but not someone who is likely to play as a defensive midfielder.

Midfielder week in and week out for an eventual title-winning team, as he demonstrated in a disappointing performance at Luton Town last Sunday. 

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