07.09.2010, Red Bull Arena, Salzburg, AUT, UEFA 2012 Qualifier, Austria vs Kazakhstan, im Bild Fans mit ˆsterreichischen fahne tauchen das Sation in eine Rot Weiss Rote Fahnenmeer, EXPA Pictures © 2010, PhotoCredit: EXPA/ G. Groder

Liverpool “closely monitoring” Salzburg’s ‘Mini Haaland’ – 8 goals, 7 assists in 28 games

With one eye on the next generation, Liverpool are said to be monitoring young Red Bull Salzburg striker Benjamin Sesko, who has struck eight times this term.

From Sadio Mane, Takumi Minamino and Hwang Hee-chan to Erling Haaland, Patson Daka and Karim Adeyemi, Salzburg have produced a conveyor belt of attacking talent over the years.

The Austrian club are built to regenerate season by season, boosted by big-money sales for their leading talent, and have proven hugely successful at doing so.

In the wake of Haaland’s exit to Borussia Dortmund, Daka stepped up; with Daka moving on to Leicester, Adeyemi was on hand to take up the reins as lead goalscorer.

2H2BM2N Karim ADEYEMI (Salzburg), shouts, gesture, gives instructions, action, single image, cut single motif, half figure, half figure. FC Salzburg - VFL Wolfsburg 3-1, Soccer Champions League, Group G, 3rd matchday on October 20, 2021 at the Salzburg Stadium

Adeyemi is expected to depart Salzburg at the end of the current season, with Liverpool interested, and it is likely that his successor is already at the club.

Sesko, the 18-year-old Slovenian, has scored eight and assisted seven in 28 appearances for Salzburg this season, including three goals and three assists in 651 minutes in the Austrian Bundesliga.

If Adeyemi leaves, he is primed to step up – though, according to Goal, Liverpool are among the clubs who could look to get ahead of the curve when it comes to Salzburg’s No. 30.

In their NXGN list of the 50 best wonderkids in football, Goal claim that Liverpool, Bayern Munich and Tottenham are all “closely monitoring” Sesko.

Man City, Juventus and Dortmund are also credited with an interest in a player ranked ninth in the list – behind only Youssoufa Moukoko, Devyne Rensch, Rayan Cherki, Harvey Elliott, Jamal Musiala, Gavi, Florian Wirtz and Jude Bellingham.

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Tuesday, December 10, 2019: FC Salzburg's Erling Braut Haaland (L) and Liverpool's Mohamed Salah during the final UEFA Champions League Group E match between FC Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Standing at 6’4″ but also blessed with incredible pace, Sesko has already been nicknamed ‘Mini Haaland’ and seen his team-mates compare him to the Norwegian phenomenon.

In a profile by Goal from back in June, the teenager is quoted as saying: “My team-mates at the club tell me that Haaland and I are very similar, especially in terms of speed.

“Most of them even tell me that I’m better than him!”

Sesko added: “Such comparisons motivate me and give me energy.”

Sesko joined Salzburg from NK Domzale in 2019 for a fee of around £2.1 million, turning down offers from major European clubs in favour of the development project at the Red Bull Arena.

After scoring 22 goals and laying on six assists over two seasons on loan with sister-club FC Liefering, Sesko has now made his first, impressive forays into life in the Salzburg first team.

Whether he will end up at Anfield in the future remains to be seen, but it certainly makes sense for Liverpool to already be scouting the next generation at a club like Salzburg, along with the current crop.