In pictures: Liverpool start pre-season campaign
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After a few weeks of a slow going in the transfer market, Liverpool are now going all out to sign Euro 2020-winning attacker Federico Chiesa. And their pursuit of the Juventus star suggests Jurgen Klopp has found a surprising weakness in his Reds squad.
The injury issues that plagued his defence last season appear to have been negated by the signing of Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig.
With that £35million move wrapped up, Klopp is now turning to the other areas of his squad that require reinforcements if they are to mount a Premier League title challenge.
Many expected that the next position group on Klopp’s shopping list will be in central midfield, with Georginio Wijnaldum’s departure leaving a major gap in the Reds squad.
Wijnaldum was an ever-present last season, captaining the Reds for much of the Premier League season.
But he failed to agree a new contract to extend his five-year stay at Anfield, instead joining French giants Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer.
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His exit certainly opens up a space in the squad for a new midfield recruit, but it appears that Klopp has made another area his priority this summer.
The pursuit of Chiesa makes it clear that the German believes he needs reinforcements in the attacking positions.
The Reds have been one of the best attacking sides in the top-flight over recent seasons, consistently finishing as the top scorers in the division.
But their impressive record in front of goal took a hit last season, with the Reds finishing with the lowest amount of goals since Klopp’s first season as manager.
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Mohamed Salah once again starred for the Anfield side and was Harry Kane’s closest challenger for the golden boot award.
But his partners up front were in less inspiring form, with Sadio Mane enduring arguably his worst season for the Reds.
The Senegal international scored just 11 league goals last term, despite appearing in all but three of Liverpool’s matches in the competition.
Roberto Firmino has also consistently struggled to find the back of the net, with the Brazilian on the scoresheet just nine times in all competitions.
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While Klopp will have a fully fit Diogo Jota at his disposal, it appears that he believes he needs more options for when Mane and Firmino are not firing.
The Reds are reported to have seen an £86m bid for Chiesa turned down by Juventus, following the Italian international’s impressive Euro 2020.
Mainly operating out wide, the 23-year-old scored 15 goals and notched 11 assists for the Old Lady last season.
Klopp would clearly be boosted by having Chiesa at his disposal and it would certainly shore up what was a surprise weakness among Liverpool’s team last term.
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