Jorg Schmadtke admits he was wrong about Liverpool summer signing

Former Liverpool sporting director Jorg Schmadtke has revealed he initially thought the Reds overpaid for Dominik Szoboszlai; a stance he admitted was a 'misjudgement'.

Schmadtke arrived at Liverpool ahead of the summer of 2023 on an interim basis, following the departure of predecessor Julian Ward.

The 59-year-old former goalkeeper who previously worked as a sporting director at Wolfsburg and Koln is credited with helping to oversee the Reds' successful midfield rebuild, with deals for Wataru Endo and Ryan Gravenberch as well as Szoboszlai.

However, the man himself has admitted he initially thought Szoboszlai — widely viewed as one of the transfers of the summer, despite his fee — was overpriced.

Schmadtke, who left his role at Anfield at the end of the January window, told German publication Zeit Online: “Now in Liverpool there was someone who cost €70m (£60m), Szoboszlai, who we brought from Leipzig.

“Then I said: It’s too expensive. From today’s perspective, that was a misjudgment on my part. The boy was an important Liverpool player from day one. He performed better than I would have expected him to.”

Handed the number eight shirt upon his arrival, Szoboszlai became an instant hit at Liverpool.

The Hungarian earned admiring glances before the season even started after bossing the fabled 'lactate test' in pre-season and then proceeded to wow supporters with his lung-busting runs and ability to strike a ball.

Dominik Szoboszlai

Burnley, England, 26th December 2023. Dominik Szoboszlai of Liverpool during the Premier League match at Turf Moor, Burnley. Picture credit should read: Darren Staples / Sportimage EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorised audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or live services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. SPI-2833-0073

The addition of Szoboszlai's creativity and dynamism has been exactly what Liverpool's midfield missed last season, while the 23-year-old has contributed five goals and two assists in all competitions so far in 2023/24.

Currently out of action with a hamstring injury, Jurgen Klopp revealed before the win over Southampton that Szoboszlai is among the players who are 'touch and go' as they near returns.

Speaking ahead of the Carabao Cup final, Szoboszlai revealed he even argued with the Reds' staff in order to be involved.

"I don’t wear it well, I hate not playing," he said. “I argued a lot with the doctors. I feel like I could play, but the diagnosis doesn’t show that. I believe they know better, but that’s how it feels."

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