Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has a new Ilkay Gundogan, with a massive transfer ‘complete’.
Jurgen Klopp and Ilkay Gundogan were teammates at Borussia Dortmund, and the Liverpool manager may have found the next best thing.
Jurgen Klopp could be preparing to welcome a new Ilkay Gundogan to Anfield this summer, according to claims that Alexis MacAllister has agreed to join Liverpool. Klopp will want to reestablish the kind of bond he had with Gundogan at Borussia Dortmund, where the pair won the Bundesliga title, by working with the departing Brighton star.
Gundogan has been a gentleman since leaving Dortmund for Manchester City in 2016. With the Sky Blues winning their third Premier League title in a row on Sunday, this season could be the German’s best yet, with 12 goals in 30 league games.
The 32-year-old’s outstanding form has even prompted City to reconsider their attitude in contract discussions, with sources stating that a multi-year deal is now on the table as Pep Guardiola and co look to keep Gundogan at the Etihad Stadium for the foreseeable future.
A player of that caliber would be an enormous asset to Klopp’s side at Anfield. Liverpool fans will be hoping that Mac Allister can compete with Gundogan and become one of the best midfielders in the Premier League, as TyC Sports reports that a £70 million summer contract has been finalised.
The signing would be exciting not only because of Mac Allister’s outstanding performances at Brighton this season, but also because of the similarities in profile between the World Cup champion and Gundogan.
Not only are the two similar in stature, with Mac Allister being only two inches shorter and of a comparable frame to Gundogan, but also in how they like to get forward and join attacks. Both players are among the most prolific shot-takers for central midfielders in Europe’s top five leagues, averaging more than two shots per 90 minutes.
Mac Allister and Gundogan are likewise ranked highly in terms of pass completion rate and amount of touches in the opponent penalty area, but each player has built a niche of their own in numerous areas.
Klopp will be hoping that Mac Allister adds assists to his game. The 24-year-old has only two Premier League goals this season, which is disappointing for an all-around midfielder, and Gundogan is miles ahead in that department.
But the Reds can take heart from a characteristic that Mac Allister possesses but Gundogan does not – tackling. The City star usually leaves it to his defensive-minded teammates, such as Rodri or John Stones, whilst his Seagulls opponent takes charge, which should give Klopp’s side more steel in the heart of the park.
Landing Mac Allister would thus be an intriguing possibility for the Anfield crowd, and the fact that they are apparently ready to beat Chelsea to the Argentine’s signature will further sweeten the bargain.