Ex-Liverpool defender Jose Enrique believes that the Reds moving for Atletico Madrid ace Saul Niguez is a ‘no-brainer’, with the former full-back outlined as such in his latest column for Empire of the Kop.
Enrique has wrote for Empire of the Kop that Liverpool should move for ‘world-class player’ Saul if the 26-year-old is available on a loan deal that does not include an obligation to make the deal permanent.
Enrique, who spent five years with the Reds, feels that a new midfielder is not a ‘priority’ for Jurgen Klopp, even though Saul may be a ‘better option’ than some of the Reds’ current players in this area.
Fabrizio Romano reports that Chelsea have tabled a bid for the long-serving Atleti ace, whilst Manchester United have also enquired about the Spaniard, who is ‘ready’ for a Premier League move.
AS claimed a few days ago that Liverpool were preparing a €40m offer for Saul, who played a smaller role than usual for Atleti last season, though he still started 30 of his 41 appearances.
Here is what Enrique had to say when questioned on whether it’s time Liverpool moved for Saul:
“If it’s a loan with an option to buy (and not a compulsion to buy) it’s a no-brainer, that’s the reality.”
“If he does well – I believe he’s a world-class player and he’d do well – you can buy him, and if not you can just have him for the season.”
“In my opinion, I don’t think signing a new midfielder is a priority for [Jurgen] Klopp.”
“We have Curtis [Jones], Harvey Elliott, [James] Milner, [Naby] Keita, [Jordan] Henderson, Fabinho, Thiago; so you have six or seven players for three positions, so why would you sign a new No.8, even if he’s a better option than some of the players already available?”
“I believe he [Klopp] has a lot of trust in Elliott – as we saw when he started against Burnley – Curtis Jones is still there but we don’t see too much of him, Keita is there, Thiago is back and played for a bit the other day, Hendo is back, Fabinho will be back soon as well, so we have plenty of options.”
With Saul being a key player for Diego Simeone’s side since he burst onto the scene as a youngster, it’s been quite strange to see the intense suggestions that he’s headed for the exit door this summer.
Saul has been a top midfielder in La Liga for some time and has also proved his quality on the Champions League stage, he’d be a fine recruit for any major side on an initial loan deal.
Whilst the 26-year-old certainly has the talent to play a starting role for the Reds, as Enrique notes, perhaps moving for a midfielder isn’t the wisest move for the Anfield outfit at this moment in time.
Liverpool already have Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara, Fabinho, Naby Keita, Curtis Jones and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to call on in this position, they may be better off addressing more pressing needs.