With Jurgen Klopp set to add to his attacking options this summer, Paris Saint-Germain star Javier Pastore is the latest to be linked with Liverpool.
Pastore has fallen behind £44 million summer signing Angel Di Maria in the pecking order at PSG, and struggling with injuries throughout 2015/16, has made just 25 appearances for Laurent Blanc’s side.
After a breakout campaign in Ligue 1 last season, scoring five goals and laying on a further 13 assists in 34 games, Pastore now finds himself scrapping for a first-team role.
This has sparked Liverpool’s interest ahead of the summer transfer window, according to French publication France Football.
Reporting overtures from Juventus, Nabil Djellit claims that Liverpool are working “behind the scenes” to seal Pastore’s signature.
Reds scout Kevin Hunt is said to have been sent to Paris to watch both Pastore and 17-year-old centre-back Mamadou Doucoure, with the Argentina international said to be on a “shortlist” of midfielders whose “profile matches [Klopp’s] philosophy.”
Pastore would certainly suit Klopp’s attacking system in a number of ways, most notably due to the 27-year-old’s flexibility, able to shine in a number of roles.
Throughout his time at PSG, Pastore has been deployed as a central midfielder, left winger, right winger, No. 10 and an auxiliary centre-forward, scoring 37 goals and registering 44 assists in 208 appearances.
What is most striking about Pastore is his exceptional passing range, able to find team-mates with quick, short passes or pinpoint, long balls, and this would suit Klopp’s varied buildup.
While the 27-year-old’s defensive contribution during his time at PSG can be criticised, his time in a well-drilled, hardworking unit at Palermo proved he is capable of operating in a pressing game.
Pastore has become something of a sleeping giant at PSG, and while Djellit suggests that the Paris club may be looking for a big fee for the midfielder, Klopp could prompt a return to form for a player who was once one of Europe’s finest creative talents.