According to the Mirror, former Liverpool midfielder Don Hutchinson has claimed that Liverpool would be guaranteed next season’s Premier League title if they were to sign Kalidou Koulibaly this summer.
Hutchinson made the claim to ESPN FC, the former Scotland international believes that if the Napoli stalwart was to join the Reds – ‘you wrap the title up right there’.
Hutchinson added that there wouldn’t be ‘another partnership like it’ if Koulibaly features at the heart of Liverpool’s defence alongside superstar Virgil van Dijk.
It’s claimed that Napoli wouldn’t accept anything less than €100m for Senegalese stalwart, but Gazzetta claim that the Reds could get the side to budge on this valuation by offering Dejan Lovren in return.
Here’s what Hutchinson had to say on the prospect of Koulibaly at Liverpool:
“I think if Koulibaly comes through the door and he plays alongside Virgil van Dijk, I think you wrap the title up right there,”
“I don’t think there’s anyone better, there won’t be another partnership like it.”
“The best defenders out there in Europe apart from the Premier League at the moment is Milan Skriniar at Inter, my gut feeling is he’s going to join Pep [Guardiola] at Man City, and alongside him is Koulibaly.”
“I think at 28 he’s a great age, he’s got good pace, he’s strong, he’s a leader.”
“I think he walks straight into Liverpool’s line up and he makes them harder to beat, he makes them a physical presence.”
“You wouldn’t want to play against Van Dijk or Koulibaly – how on earth as a striker as a striker do you even think about getting any joy out of those two?”
“I think if you’re going to win titles and you want to try and adapt, Liverpool have to be harder to beat.”
“You have to go into Europe and you have to have people like Koulibaly who can lead you in Europe.”
“You can try and go that way when games are tight if you want a clean sheet, Koulibaly and Van Dijk, [Andy] Robertson and Trent [Alexander-Arnold] would be nigh-on impossible to break down, Alisson behind them.”
“And it would just put fear I would imagine into every manager and every player that lines up against Liverpool trying to come up with a game plan of how you’re actually going to score goals,”
“What is Liverpool’s weakness going to be?”
“And with Koulibaly and Van Dijk and Alisson as that sort of triangle, that three, they would take some beating.”
The Merseyside outfit built a massive 25-point lead at the top of the Premier League table before the Coronavirus pandemic led to the current campaign being suspended indefinitely.
Media speculation has started to hint at the potential return of the top-flight, if this happens the Reds would need just six points from their remaining nine games to secure their first league title in 30 years.
In my opinion, if it’s deemed unsafe to resume the season and it’s consequently voided, Liverpool thoroughly deserve to be crowned champions for their fine performances – this matter should be out of the question.
In any scenario that Liverpool are rightfully deemed champions, the Reds would then need to turn their attention to improving an already solid side going into next season.
Koulibaly would be an ideal signing, just as Hutchinson says he’d ‘walk’ into Liverpool’s starting lineup.
Hutchinson even added that the Reds would effectively have no ‘weaknesses’ if they were to secure the signature of Sadio Mane’s international teammate.
With Klopp’s side already seen as one of the best in the world, it seems as though there would only be a small pool of players that could instantly come in as starters, Koulibaly certainly fits that bill.