Joshua Kimmich: Would the Bayern star suit Liverpool & could a transfer happen?

Liverpool social media was set ablaze on Tuesday following reports linking Bayern Munich star Joshua Kimmich with a move to Liverpool, but is there anything to it?

What's the story?

German outlet Kicker claimed on Tuesday that Kimmich is no longer seen as "unsellable" by the German champions, with the report adding: "Should a club make a specific request and make a lucrative offer for Bayern's third captain, the champions would be willing to talk."

Liverpool were not named in the story — nor were any specific suitor — and no price tag was suggested.

The Reds are, however, in the market for a new 'number 6' as a result of their now famous midfield rebuild.

The club have signed Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai, while offloading James Milner, Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Arthur Melo. Meanwhile, Fabinho and Jordan Henderson look set for transfers to the Saudi Pro League.

Would Kimmich suit Liverpool?

Should Fabinho depart, as expected, Jurgen Klopp will be left with just two specialist defensive midfielders in his first-team squad: Tyler Morton (aged 20) and Stefan Bajcetic (18).

It is widely reported that Liverpool will sign at least one more midfielder this summer, with a Fabinho-type player top of the agenda — names like Romeo Lavia, Manu Kone, Cheick Doucoure and Ryan Gravenberch (also of Bayern) have been mentioned.

Kimmich would represent a premium option, both in price and quality.

The 28-year-old has been an elite operator for Bayern since 2015 and is equally adept at right back as in midfield. In addition to lifting eight Bundesliga titles and the 2020 Champions League, Bayern's third captain is a key man for Germany, earning 79 caps to date. If you were making a 23-man 'Earth squad' to play the aliens, Kimmich would probably be in it.

On a pure ability level, it's hard not to see a player of Kimmich's calibre fitting in at Liverpool in some role.

However, Klopp generally prefers height and physicality for his defensive midfielders (see Fabinho) — areas in which Kimmich isn't as strong. So whether he would be used as a Fabinho replacement, at right back or somewhere else in Liverpool's system is open for debate in this entirely hypothetical scenario.

READ MORE: Do any of the linked defensive midfielders actually make sense for Liverpool?

Is a deal likely?

In a word, nein.

Putting aside the face that Liverpool aren't even mentioned as interested in Kicker's original story, Kimmich just isn't the profile Liverpool under FSG tend to go for.

With the exception of Thiago (Bayern again), Liverpool don't sign from the established elite, preferring to make superstars than buy ready-made ones.

While Thiago was the exception to that rule, he was also (at £20m) much cheaper than Kimmich would likely ever be. The German still has two years to run on his contract in Bavaria and is reportedly Bayern's highest paid player on over €300k (£260k) a week. It is hard to imagine Thomas Tuchel's side entertaining offers sub £70m, while currently only Mohamed Salah earns similar wages for Liverpool.

At 28, Kimmich is also older than the majority of FSG signings — with those in the >26 range like Mac Allister and Szoboszlai generally preferred.

As noted above, Kimmich's possible aerial deficiencies (he is 5ft 10in and in just the 23rd percentile for aerials won when compared with other midfielders, fbref) would also likely count against him should Liverpool weigh up whether to break the bank.

Finally, a subsequent report from Bild has pooh-poohed Kicker's take, instead claiming that Tuchel and Bayern are not open to selling Kimmich at all, while the player himself has no desire to leave.

So that's probably that then.

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