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Liverpool still targeting another midfielder as Henderson and Fabinho eye big-money moves

Liverpool could be in the market for two new midfielders with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho tipped to move to Saudi Arabia this summer.

jordan henderson liverpool 2020

Liverpool have already splashed out over £90m on two new creative midfielders this summer. Alexis MacAllister arrived from Brighton for around £35m while Dominik Szoboszlai was snapped up for £60m from RB Leipzig to help solve their creative issues in the middle of the park following a hugely disappointing 2022/23 campaign.

Many thought that was Jurgen Klopp’s ‘midfield overhaul’ complete, however, the Germans’ plans have been thrown into disarray after the mega-rich Saudi clubs came calling for two of his most important midfield players.

Henderson to leave?

Shock reports broke earlier this week claiming that Jordan Henderson had been offered a lucrative contract by Saudi Pro League club Al-Ettifaq. Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard recently took up the managers job at Al-Ettifaq, and his first move was to request the transfer of Henderson. If you’d have asked most fans who own Liverpool tickets if Henderson would move to Saudi Arabia, the vast majority would have said NO! The 33-year-old has been a supporter of the LGBTQ+ community and was nominated as a Football Ally at the LGBT Awards in 2021, so it was unthinkable that he would move to a country where homosexuality is illegal.

However, the latest reports suggest that Henderson has now agreed a lucrative three-year contract with Al-Ettifaq and held talks with Klopp this week to request he be allowed to leave. Klopp admitted to Henderson that he won’t be a first team regular next season and his minutes would be limited following the arrival of MacAllister and Szoboszlai. While Liverpool would ideally like to keep Henderson given his immense influence in the dressing room, it appears they could be open to selling.

The Saudi club are hoping to agree a free transfer but Liverpool are demanding over £10m for his signature. We’ll have to wait and see if a deal can be agreed but it appears Henderson is hoping to secure a move to Saudi Arabia and it will leave a bitter taste among Liverpool fans if he does join Al-Ettifaq.

Fabinho next?

Losing Henderson will be a blow for Liverpool, but things could be about to get worse as Fabinho is the latest player being lined-up for a move to Saudi Arabia. Al-Ittihad have made contact with the Brazilian international to discuss a move this summer and the two parties are now in talks over a salary package. Al-Ittihad are expected to try and lure Fabinho with a bumper pay packet as they look to tempt him to join the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, N’Golo Kante, Karim Benzema and Ruben Neves in moving to the Gulf State.

There have been reports that Al-Ittihad have submitted a £40m offer, which would be tempting for Liverpool given that Fabinho turns 30 this year and was hugely inconsistent last season. The Brazilian has been outstanding for the Reds since arriving from Monaco in 2018 and played a key role in them winning the Premier League and Champions League in recent years. However, his best days could be behind him and £40m would be an excellent deal for Liverpool if they decide it’s time to cash-in.


Losing Henderson and Fabinho would leave Klopp with two huge voids to fill in his midfield so replacements would be needed. Liverpool have been strongly linked with a number of players in recent days with reports suggesting they are ready to join the race to sign Brighton star Moises Caicedo. The Ecuadorian almost joined Arsenal in January and was now expected to head to Chelsea with the Blues locked in talks with Brighton over an £80m deal. However, with Liverpool now back in the market for midfield reinforcements, they are looking to hijack Chelsea’s proposed move.

Caicedo was excellent for Brighton last season and would be a superb signing for Liverpool if they could lure him to Anfield. But his reported price-tag could prove to be a stumbling block. Given Liverpool pulled out of the race to sign Jude Bellingham due to his £100m price tag, it’s difficult to see them then spending £80m on Caicedo.

Therefore, a cheaper alternative may be needed and the Reds are once again being linked with Manu Kone. The Borussia Monchengladbach star was strongly linked with a move to Anfield earlier in the summer but the links cooled after they signed MacAllister. However, Kone is back on Klopp’s radar and he could be picked up for around £34m – far less than Caicedo. Liverpool chief Jorg Schmadtke is reportedly working on a possible deal but any move will have to wait until Kone has recovered from a knee injury as he wouldn’t be able to pass any medical.

Another player who has been strongly linked with a move to Liverpool this summer is Nice star Khephren Thuram. The 22-year-old is seemingly a prime target for Klopp after impressing in Ligue 1 last season and the Reds could accelerate their attempts to sign him if Henderson and/or Fabinho depart over the coming days. Thuram is a versatile midfielder who is powerful and athletic, so he’d be an exciting addition to the Liverpool ranks.

The 6ft 3in Frenchman would jump at the chance of moving to Anfield and with a reported price-tag of £43m, he’s be a realistic option for Liverpool if they decide to formalise their interest. However, they’ll face competition as Bayern Munich are also in the hunt for the player while Newcastle United have also been credited with an interest.

Defensive reinforcements?

If Liverpool sell Henderson and Fabinho, and replace them with cost-effective solutions like Kone and Thuram, it may leave Klopp with funds to strengthen his defence. The Reds are reportedly in the market for another centre-back to compete with Virgil van Dijk, Ibrahima Konate, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez next season and Levi Colwill has emerged as the prime target.

The youngster has forged a reputation as one of the best young centre-backs in England following his excellent displays while on loan at Brighton last season. Chelsea want to keep hold of him but Colwill wants assurances he’ll be a regular under Mauricio Pochettino. If he isn’t promised what he wants, he could push for a move for Liverpool are ready to pounce.

Colwill would reportedly cost around £40m and it would be money well spent as the 20-year-old is a huge talent who could develop into a top class defender under Klopp at Anfield. However, it remains to be seen whether Chelsea would be prepared to do business with the Reds for such an exciting young talent and they may prefer to sell to Brighton rather than a direct rival.

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