Liverpool sporting director Jorg Schmadtke knows absolutely everyone in German football.
The same can be said of Jürgen Klopp, so it is no surprise to see the Reds constantly linked with players from the Bundesliga.
Liverpool still have a few gaps to fill in the squad during the transfer window and it may be easy for Schmadtke to open his contacts book to poach some of the best talent playing in Germany.
“Of course, there are always players in Germany who are attractive," Schmadtke told Sky Germany. "Then my experience in the market is in demand. Because, of course, I know a little bit about how the other side is paid and how the other side proceeds in negotiations. The German market is my home market and of course easier for me. But it’s not like we’ve now pointed all our telescopes at Germany.”
Anfield Watch takes a look at five Bundesliga players Liverpool could target:
Fabinho's imminent exit means Liverpool will be lacking again in midfield, and Borussia Monchengladbach's Manu Kone is one name that won't go away. Schmadtke's son Nils is the current sporting director at Gladbach, so might even be part of the same family WhatsApp group. Kone is a great all-round midfielder who could slot into the Fabinho role, but also provide versatility in the middle of the field.
Since signing for Bayern Munich last summer, Ryan Gravenberch has played fewer than 600 minutes of Bundesliga football. He is determined to fight for his place at the Allianz Arena, but with the Bavarians adding Konrad Laimer on a free transfer, competition remains fierce. Liverpool have regularly been linked as possible saviours of the Netherlands international and the rumour refuses to go away.
An even better addition from the Bayern Munich midfield would be powerhouse Leon Goretzka. The man mountain has been a key figure in Munich, but Laimer's arrival may push him to the sidelines under Thomas Tuchel. As a result, the club are not refusing to rule out a sale this summer, with FootballTransfers revealing that Liverpool are extremely interested.
Liverpool want to strengthen in defence, so why not make a move for the biggest defensive talent in Germany right now? Gvardiol looked set to move to Premier League title rivals Manchester City, but that move has hit a major snag – an 11th-hour hijack could vastly improve centre-back options at Anfield AND annoy Pep Guardiola at the same time!
Do Liverpool even need to sign a midfielder if they just put Trent Alexander-Arnold there full-time? That would free up a spot at right-back, where Bayer Leverkusen's Jeremie Frimpong has been one of Europe's breakout stars over the past year. The Dutchman has been linked to Arsenal — and of course Erik ten Hag's Netherlands United — but no concrete offers have been made. Frimpong moved to Germany from Celtic, so may welcome a return to the U.K., albeit at a much larger price than he left for.