It’s going to be an interesting summer at Anfield.
Jurgen Klopp will be given a decent-sized transfer budget as he attempts to turn this current Liverpool side into his own.
The German manager will want to sign players to match his philosophy as he tries to instil his high-pressing game on Merseyside.
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But, it’s not just signing players that Klopp needs to concentrate on.
Contracts for a number of first-team stars will be expiring shortly and the former Borussia Dortmund boss will need to decide who to keep and who to let go.
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One of those nearing the end of his current deal is Joe Allen. His contract expires at the end of next season and negotiations have yet to begin over a new deal.
The Welshman has found starts hard to come by at Anfield since Klopp’s arrival in October but has performed admirably whenever called upon. In fact, his performances of late have turned the 26-year-old from fan scapegoat into fan favourite in the space of a few months.
But, it’s not just the supporters that are loving Allen. Club legend Phil Thompson also has a soft spot for the ‘Welsh Xavi’ and believes it should be Klopp’s priority to keep hold of the former Swansea man.
Thompson on Allen
"One thing I want to see Klopp do quickly is get Joe Allen signed up on a new deal," he told Sky Sports.
"He was brilliant against Bournemouth and whenever he's come on, against Dortmund and Everton, he's been terrific."
Important role to play
While Allen has found himself behind Emre Can and Jordan Henderson in the midfield pecking order, he may have an important role to play in the remainder of the season.
Both Henderson and Can appear to have been ruled out until the summer meaning Allen could be handed a starting role against Villarreal in Liverpool’s two Europa League semi-finals.
Good performances in those ties would surely see Allen rewarded with a new deal before the start of next season.
But, if he does sign, it’s unlikely to be the only contract signed at the club in the next few months.
Ahead of his debut season, Klopp will likely add to the signings of Joel Matip and Marko Grujic that he has already made since replacing Brendan Rodgers.
And Thompson believes the club can challenge for the title if they can add a couple of quality players, rather than focusing on squad depth.
Thompson on signings
"The top four should be the aim but there's no reason that a push for title if Klopp strengthens the spine of the side,” he said.
"I'd like to see a couple of quality first-team players added rather than six or seven that are going to compete for places.
"Joel Matip is coming in a centre-back but I think, with Christian Benteke and Mario Balotelli probably leaving, another top striker and central midfielder are needed.
"That's where Klopp comes in because he's a big draw and players from all over Europe will have been watching the scenes from against Dortmund and thinking to themselves that they want to play under that man in that atmosphere,” the former defender added.
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