Liverpool target Manu Koné is "one to watch" after return to training

Daryl Finch
10 months ago

After a brief period on the sidelines due to injury, Liverpool target Manu Koné has resumed training, reigniting rumours of a potential move before the summer transfer window closes.

The young Borussia Mönchengladbach midfielder was believed to be of keen interest to Liverpool earlier in the summer, along with his France under-21 teammate Khéphren Thuram. However, a knee injury sustained during the Under-21 European Championships sidelined him for six weeks, effectively ending the possibility of an immediate move.

However, Koné, 22, has now returned to training, and reports are emerging suggesting that various clubs, including Liverpool, PSG, and Juventus, are eyeing him for a potential transfer before the window closes.

According to Fabrizio Romano, Koné has made a successful recovery from his injury and is set to rejoin the Mönchengladbach squad in the coming days.

The transfer insider then described the situation as "one to watch in the final weeks of the window".

A desperate chase

With Liverpool losing out on the signings of Brighton and Hove Albion's Moisés Caicedo and Southampton's Roméo Lavia, Liverpool's pursuit of a defensive midfielder is becoming desperate.

According to Christian Falk, Koné's release clause stands at £34 million. This perhaps represents far better value than Caicedo's British record transfer record fee of £115 million and the £50 million plus add-ons offered by Chelsea to tempt Roméo Lavia to Stamford Bridge.

Similarities to Caicedo

In the absence of a recognised number six - and Stefan Bajcetic and Thiago not fit enough to return to action - Jürgen Klopp experimented with Alexis Mac Allister in the role in Sunday's 1-1 draw with Chelsea. Despite his strong performance, it was nonetheless clear that a long-term solution is needed.

In terms of how he would fit in at Anfield, Koné is particularly skilled at taking on opponents, boasting a high success rate in this aspect.

Stylistically, therefore, he is of a much more similar profile to Caicedo given his athleticism and powerful running style. As a result, even if the Reds were to secure his signing, a replacement for Fabinho's more defensive, screening role would still be required.

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