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Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain linked with surprise move to Wolves after Thiago & Jota signings

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been linked with an unlikely move to Wolves, with the No. 15 expected to drop down the pecking order after deals for Thiago and Diogo Jota.

EDIT: The Athletic’s James Pearce has now been “told there is zero chance of Liverpool selling Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain before the transfer deadline,” as he is a “key part of Klopp’s plans.”

It has been a difficult two seasons for Oxlade-Chamberlain, with injury and competition for places limiting the midfielder to 2,214 minutes over 43 appearances.

That averages at 51.5 minutes per outing, and only once did he play the full 90, that being in 2-1 win over Monterrey at the Club World Cup in December.

With the emergence of Naby Keita and the signings of Thiago, Jota and Takumi Minamino, it is hard to see how Oxlade-Chamberlain breaks back into the first-choice side at Anfield, but he remains a useful option.

However, the Mirror claim that Wolves are “eyeing an ambitious move” for the 27-year-old, as they hope to “take advantage” of his diminishing role on Merseyside to sign a second player from the Reds this summer.

Ki-Jana Hoever has already joined the club in a deal worth up to £13.5 million, while Jota moved the other way in a package that could eventually rise to £45 million.

Relations between the two sides are likely to be strong, with The Athletic reporting that Liverpool agreed to pay an additional £10 million on top of Wolves‘ asking price for Jota in order to spread out the cost over a long-term period, with under £4.5 million spent up front.

Wolves have already brought in Fabio Silva for a club-record £35 million, with Marcal, Vitinha and Matija Sarkic also arriving along with Hoever, but it can be argued that with the loss of Jota, Oxlade-Chamberlain would be a strong signing.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, July 22, 2020: Liverpool’s Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (C) celebrates scoring his side's fifth goal, to make the score 5-3, with team-mate Curtis Jones during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Chelsea FC at Anfield. The game was played behind closed doors due to the UK government’s social distancing laws during the Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Mirror‘s report is a dubious one, however, particularly as they claim that Liverpool would look to “recoup as much of the £25 million they paid to take him from Arsenal in 2017 as possible,” despite the deal having been worth £35 million.

But it does raise the question of whether Oxlade-Chamberlain would benefit from a move away from Merseyside in the future, with this likely to be a make-or-break season for the England international.

His ability is unquestionable, but continued injury problems have led Klopp to seek further options in both midfield and attack, where his versatility have previously proved key.

Starts are likely to come at a premium with Thiago and Jota now both jostling for places, and it is possible that a sizeable bid would see Liverpool consider selling a player who has scored 13 and assisted 10 in 87 appearances so far.

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