It’s been a pretty busy January transfer window for Liverpool so far.
There’s been no incomings, nor are there likely to be at this stage, but we have trimmed our squad. Both Dominic Solanke and Nathaniel Clyne have moved on to Bournemouth. Solanke commanded an impressive £19m fee for a player who has ultimately achieved little in his time at Anfield and Clyne was surplus to requirements too.
However, apart from the expected links to Nabil Fekir, which are completely wide of the mark, there have been very few reported targets for the Reds so far in this January transfer window.
Jürgen Klopp himself has stated that business inbound is unlikely and that would be consistent with his approach since he took the Liverpool job. The one January signing he has made so far other than Virgil van Dijk is Steven Caulker, and the less said about that jabroni the better.
Klopp is a patient man and he has resisted the temptation to dip into the market despite some lean times at centre half. However, Joel Matip made the bench at Brighton and Joe Gomez is close to a return. After the chaotic schedule that December brings, the games thin out for a while to one game a week or less. This will mean that Gomez and any other injured players, such as Trent Alexander-Arnold, will only miss a handful of games.
With that being said, I’d like us to make one addition to the squad this January – and apart from a nominal fee to terminate the loan deal for Harry Wilson, it would cost us nothing. The young Welshman has been trailblazing in the Championship for Derby County.
Wilson featured heavily in our pre-season campaign and impressed before heading to Pride Park on a season long loan.
He has flourished in their attacking set up and you really feel that this loan spell has kicked him on. We’ve seen it so often in the past where players excel at youth team levels only to stagnate. Dani Pachecho is the example that sticks out to me – had he been able to play more first team football, he may have played at a higher level for us. Instead, he stagnated and has barely amounted to anything.
Wilson on the other hand has flourished with some perfectly picked loan moves. He has scored 11 goals and set up a further 3 to date this season and the vast majority of these have been spectacular goals. The free kick in the EFL Cup game at Old Trafford in particular is up there for goal of the season.
Harry Wilson will save Liverpool an absolute fortune next season. This is the loan system at its best. #LFC
— Ben Webb (@BenWebbLFC) January 16, 2019
Always prolific at youth level, Wilson taking his eye for goal to first team football is something that should be of huge interest to Liverpool. He also scored 7 goals in just 13 games for Hull City in a half season loan spell last term.
I would normally be very happy to see his development continue at Derby, but if it was down to me, he would be spending the rest of the season with us. We are in such a good position in the league, and yet we feel a little bit light up front. Daniel Sturridge has not done anything significant of note since his outrageous goal in the last minute at Chelsea. Divock Origi has two for the season but is unreliable.
We are depending on our front three to keep fit and keep firing. To their credit, as the season has come on they have become more and more dangerous after a slow start. We’re entitled to depend on them because they are one of the best trios in the game. However, tired legs are my worry.
Able to play wide left or wide right, Wilson would be a perfect foil for Mo Salah or Sadio Mané.
He would be a very useful option to call off the bench should we need something spectacular late on in a game. I think he has proven he is ready to take the Premier League on.
He could also start games against some of the weaker teams. The ability to rest and rotate our forwards later in the season could make all the difference. Our front three are very fit but they are not impervious to tiredness.
There has been no talk of Wilson being recalled, and I don’t find it likely at this time. Rightly or wrongly, Klopp is seemingly happy to go with what he has. I wish we would add that little more depth up front personally but Klopp has proven every season so far that he gets it right.
Even with no appearances for Liverpool this season, you would think that Wilson is becoming heir apparent to play a significant part next season. With the rest of the squad fairly well set, it’s further up front that we will need more work. And Wilson looks like he is well poised to save us a fortune – I just wish we could bring him in now.
*Odds are subject to change.