HomePREMIER LEAGUEJurgen Klopp's furious outburst demonstrates that the time has come. FSG provided...

Jurgen Klopp’s furious outburst demonstrates that the time has come. FSG provided an answer to the most important Liverpool question of all.

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Jurgen Klopp’s furious outburst demonstrates that the time has come. FSG provided an answer to the most important Liverpool question of all.

This week’s Blood Red column looks at Liverpool’s need for a midfielder as well as Jurgen Klopp’s heated response to transactions.

The transfer market may be at an all-time high during Jurgen Klopp’s reign at Anfield right now. So much so that by the end of his Friday press conference, Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp had had enough.

Having previously stated that he will not be adding to his squad this month, Klopp was questioned why there will likely be no further signings to supplement the arrival of Cody Gakpo as he spoke to the assembled journalists at the AXA Centre.

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“Really?” Klopp exclaimed. “I’ve had “I’ve had 6,000 press conferences at Liverpool. Come on, do I have to tell you the money story again? What could be the reason [for no more signings]? Is it that we have money like crazy but we don’t buy the players even when they are available? “That’s what you think of me, after all the years? Why do you ask the question when the answer lies on the table. You know the answer. If I sit here and say: ‘No, no, no. We have money in the bank massively, like we don’t know what to do with, but the players that are out there, nah we don’t do that’. On top of that, the problem we have is that at the moment four of our offensive players are injured.” Klopp is correct in insisting that he does not need to sign a five-year contract for another striker to address the relatively short-term absences of Diogo Jota and Luis Diaz while Roberto Firmino and Darwin Nunez are also not seriously injured, but the glaring issue remains in the center of the park.

While Klopp is correct that transfers cannot solve injuries, this ignores the larger issue of a squad in desperate need of midfield dynamism even with a fully fit roster.

And, if the main stumbling barrier is merely a lack of funds, the question must be asked: Where has all the money gone? When, as was the case last year, Liverpool’s self-sustaining model appears to be the product of genius. Klopp is correct in insisting that he does not need to sign a five-year contract for another striker to address the relatively short-term absences of Diogo Jota and Luis Diaz while Roberto Firmino and Darwin Nunez are also not seriously injured, but the glaring issue remains in the center of the park.

While Klopp is correct that transfers cannot solve injuries, this ignores the larger issue of a squad in desperate need of midfield dynamism even with a fully fit roster.

And, if the main stumbling barrier is merely a lack of funds, the question must be asked: Where has all the money gone? When, as was the case last year, Liverpool’s self-sustaining model appears to be the product of genius. The team has had a fantastic season. However, as results fall and performances dwindle, it appears to be top-down carelessness, especially when the manager is open about the absence of future transfer activity.

One school of thought holds that the funds are being set aside for more extravagant spending in the future, and the constant speculation surrounding Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham suggests that to some extent, given that the England midfielder would almost certainly set a new transfer record at Anfield, which currently stands at £75 million paid for Virgil van Dijk five years ago.

However, with Keita, Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Milner all nearing the end of their contracts, Liverpool’s midfield will require substantial surgery in the coming months. A proactive approach now will make it easier to renovate the engine room in the summer, especially if the Champions League is not on the agenda.

Attempting to rebuild an ageing midfield to the needed standard without the riches of Europe’s major league will become a near-impossible challenge for Klopp and Liverpool’s recruitment department, especially when a new sporting director will be expected to do so as well.

Whatever your thoughts are about moves in January, there is no denying that the current crop at the manager’s disposal can and must improve performance. Klopp claims Liverpool cannot afford to acquire anyone else this month, but given the stakes in the Champions League, can they afford to do? Liverpool simply don’t have enough players in their prime years to choose from in midfield, with Jordan Henderson (32), Thiago Alcantara (31), James Milner (37), Harvey Elliott (19), and Curtis Jones (21).

At 27 and 29, respectively, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain should be approaching their best, but questions linger about their long-term suitability as they enter the final few months of their contracts.

Fabinho, 29, is Liverpool’s closest thing to a quality midfielder at the appropriate age, and major questions have been raised of the Brazil international for some time now.

The signing of another midfielder this month would not cure the club’s woes. There is no disputing that those already at the club must drastically improve on what has been a frustrating and challenging season overall.

Liverpool lacks energy, and the drop-off in the data – particularly those related to running statistics and defense – shows a shockingly dramatic dip from last season’s highs.

Klopp’s harsh response in his Friday press conference appears to imply that there is little left in the pot following the deal to recruit Gakpo for an initial £37 million at the beginning of the month. And, while Liverpool’s strategy has never been to pour money at a single problem, the assumption is that a more cautious approach this month may prove more costly in the long run.

The irony, of course, is that Liverpool’s deal for Gakpo is the largest of the window thus far, while elsewhere in the Premier League, teams are loath to authorize anything huge, with the exception of Chelsea.

But, at a time when the club’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, are still weighing the benefits of outside investment while considering the possibility of selling the club altogether, wouldn’t it be better to speculate now in order to accumulate later?

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that FSG’s chances of raising finance would suffer if they were to miss out on the Champions League and the treasure trove that comes with it.

“Sometimes you have to [purchase], but most of the time we just have.” “Sometimes you have to [buy] but usually we just have to get through until the boys come back and then you can use them again,” Klopp added. “That’s why in our best season we didn’t have a lot of injuries. “Now we have them and we have to deal with that but the transfer market, for us in this moment, is obviously not the solution. But if something is out there and someone tells me ‘yes we will do it but for this particular situation’. I don’t think it will happen.”

Jurgen Klopp’s furious outburst demonstrates that the time has come. FSG provided an answer to the most important Liverpool question of all.

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