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Liverpool closing in on Japan superstar

Takumi Minamino

Kolkata, December 13: Liverpool have garnered a reputation of making some amazing transfer dealings happen in recent years especially since Jurgen Klopp was appointed.

They have paid big money when needed but at the same time, the club have also made some amazing bargain deals go through.

Andrew Robertson's signing for just £8m from relegated Hull City is one of the biggest examples of the club's excellent ability to find the talent on the cheap.

And, if reports in England are to be believed, they could be set for yet another major coup in the upcoming winter transfer window.

Liverpool are believed to be working on a deal for Red Bull Salzburg star Takumi Minamino and it is claimed that they could bring the Japanese attacking midfielder to Anfield as early in January.

The Austrian giants themselves confirmed that they have been contacted by Liverpool for the 24-year-old's services and they are honoured by the fact that their players are wanted by clubs like Liverpool.

Red Bull Salzburg sporting director Christoph Freund said, "There're currently discussions with Liverpool" for Minamino.

It is reported that the Japanese international has a £7.25m release clause in his contract and for that money, he would be an absolute steal. In both games against Liverpool this season in the UEFA Champions League, Minamino was the best player for the Austrian giants and Klopp has certainly seen something special in the fleet-footed footballer.

Minamino is incredibly versatile and would provide Liverpool a lot of options. He is capable of playing on either flank as well as a number ten. The Japanese superstar can even feature as a centre-forward. Any manager in the world would love to have such a unbelievably versatile player in their ranks. Klopp watched the player in person twice this season and it is hardly a surprise that he has recognised him special enough to play for his high-flying Liverpool side.

Minamino already has nine goals and eleven assists to his name in all competitions this season and gave Liverpool a major problem both times when he faced them. He scored once and created another in the first game which resulted in a 3-4 defeat for Salzburg, but the quality he showed has certainly caught Klopp's eye. With Adam Lallana likely to depart next summer with his contract expiry, Minamino could prove to be a ready-made replacement for the Englishman.

Liverpool have never had an Asian player to represent them at the senior level. Yan Dhanda, who is of Indian origin, played for them at youth level, but could not make it to the senior side. Minamino would be Liverpool's first-ever Asian player and it could help them build a stronger fanbase in the most populated continent which would certainly help them financially. And, all that comes for just £7.25m which is unbelievable. The Reds must be given credit if they can pull this deal off.

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Story first published: Friday, December 13, 2019, 10:36 [IST]
Other articles published on Dec 13, 2019
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