Watford set price for Sarr & Reds focus on retaining title – Liverpool FC Roundup

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Liverpool are closing in on Thiago Alcantara as a second signing of the summer…but there’s other news of a non-Thiago variety, too!

 

Full focus on a difficult retention challenge

The Reds fulfilled the dreams of many when they won the title last season – but in true Ronnie Moran spirit, that was last season.

Now it’s all about 2020/21, when another league title is up for grabs and we’ve got to be just as good to earn the trophy again.

The squad concur, and as difficult as they know it’ll be, they are fully focused on being up to the task.

Virgil van Dijk says it’s consistency which is key, being a defining trait of the team from last season and even beforehand, which they’ll need to replicate this year for further success.

And the boss says that the Reds are fully committed to self-improvement, saying it’s our desire to get better which pushes us to improve in training and transfers, rather than teams around us spending to catch up.

It all bodes well for another year of the mighty relentless Reds.

 

Watford “set price” for Ismaila Sarr – and Reds are in for him

WATFORD, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 29, 2020: Watford's Ismaïla Sarr (R) gets away from Liverpool's Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho' during the FA Premier League match between Watford FC and Liverpool FC at Vicarage Road. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Last season’s destroyer of Reds’ hopes and dreams of going an entire league season unbeaten, Ismaila Sarr, has been rather heavily linked with a move to Liverpool.

It’s an on-again, off-again sort of rumour rather than a daily update of developments type, as Thiago has been, but there’s solid reasoning behind the interest.

He’s young, improving, has just had a first season of reasonably good impact in the Premier League – but there’s far more to come.

Sarr is also a good mate of Sadio Mane‘s, fills a couple of positions the Reds could do with depth in and has the pace and goalscoring potential to be a decent acquisition over the longer term.

The downside then? £40 million, say the Mirror, is the asking price.

It’s an amount we’d expect only to shell out if there are departures this summer, particularly concerning Origi or Wilson, as they’d fill similar squad spots as well as raise that type of funding if sold.

“No bid or formal contact” at this point, says the report in the Mirror – but Dominic King of the Mail says the Reds have enquired and are “seriously considering” him as a back-up option for the forward line. He also notes a slightly reduced asking price for the winger.

Transfer pace is picking up!

 

Countdown to Thiago…!

03 August 2019, North Rhine-Westphalia, Dortmund: Soccer: DFL Supercup, Borussia Dortmund - Bayern Munich in Signal Iduna Park. Bavaria's Thiago Alcantara. Photo: Guido Kirchner/dpa

OK, ok…we’ll give you what you came for! Here’s all the latest on Thiago to Liverpool…

 

Quickfire LFC news

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 12, 2020: Liverpool’s Andy Robertson during the opening FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Leeds United 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. Liverpool won 4-3. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

  • Andy Robbo says Felipe Luis called him the ‘best left-back in the world’, which we agree with wholeheartedly (Goal)
  • Trent says retaining the title will be the Reds’ “toughest challenge yet” after a trophy-laden couple of seasons (PL)
  • New U23 coach Gary O’Neil is already having a positive impact on the club’s youngsters due to the recent senior experience he brings (LFC)

 

Around the Prem

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Tuesday, April 26, 2016: Real Madrid's Gareth Bale looks dejected after missing a chance against Manchester City during the UEFA Champions League Semi-Final 1st Leg match at the City of Manchester Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

  • Gareth Bale is flying in on Friday to seal his probable loan to Spurs, which should help the club’s so-called push for ‘young’ signings for the ‘future’ (BBC)
  • Leicester are close to signing Roma winger Cengiz Under, who has a reputation almost as big as his waistline but who has achieved little thus far (Telegraph)
  • Gareth Southgate is now allowed back into Prem stadiums on ‘scouting’ missions for England, so maybe he’ll see a left-back or two for the next squad (Mail)
  • And ex-Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino says he only watched 25 minutes of the Spurs Amazon documentary, which is about the same length of time until they were no longer in title contention under him last season (Independent)

 

Stupid decision of the day

Leeds came under fire for making Kiko Casilla captain in midweek, with the goalkeeper being banned for racist abuse last season and having not apologised for it.

Marcelo Bielsa defended the decision by saying the squad “think he deserved to be” skipper – so, instead of a single player thinking racial abuse is fine, they apparently have an entire group of them.

 

Tweet of the day

 

What we’re reading

Can Van de Beek play alongside Pogba and Fernandes? Mark Critchley asks the question for the Independent.

And if you’ve been considering more of an interest in the growing world of women’s football, this year’s a good time for it after a slew of elite signings joined the WSL this summer. BBC Sport investigates which new arrival will make the biggest impact.

 

Worth watching tonight

We’re not going to actively tell you not to watch the Europa League qualifiers, but the best match on offer is Shamrock Rovers vs AC Milan at 7pm. Take it as you will.

To mark the end of the 30-year wait for a league title, the ‘Liverpool Mishmash’ poster is available to order exclusively on This Is Anfield — the history of the Reds in one image!

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