Jurgen Klopp has been quietly going about his business for Liverpool this summer ahead of his first full season at the club.
Marko Grujic and Joel Matip were confirmed during last season, while the German has moved to secure the services of goalkeeper Loris Karius, defender Ragnar Klavan and Southampton’s Sadio Mane for £34 million.
So, five new additions and it appears that a sixth is just days away. That’s because the Liverpool Echo are reporting that the club are increasingly confident of signing Newcastle’s Georginio Wijnaldum in the coming days.
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And even Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez had admitted it could be just a matter of days before Wijnaldum makes the move.
"He is still our player and that means he has to be ready for us. If something happens (with Liverpool), we will know in some days," he told the Shields Gazette.
Talks are continuing between the two clubs over a potential deal worth around £25 million and there is a real belief that the 25-year-old will join the squad for the pre-season tour in America. The Reds flew to the west coast of the USA on Thursday morning following their 2-0 victory over Huddersfield Town on Wednesday night.
And Wijnaldum could be lining up for Klopp’s side for their first friendly in the International Champions Cup against Chelsea next Thursday before facing AC Milan on Sunday 31 July. They will then face Roma in St. Louis on August 2. The report suggests that a medical is likely to take place in the States with there being no concerns regarding personal terms.
Wijnaldum played the final 11 minutes of Newcastle’s friendly with Doncaster Rovers on Wednesday night but it seems as though that could well have been his last appearance in the black and white stripes. Despite scoring 11 goals in his debut season in England following his £14.5 million move from PSV last summer, he couldn’t prevent the Magpies from being relegated to the Championship.
Benitez on Wijnaldum
Back in March, Newcastle boss Benitez explained just how highly he rated Wijnaldum by claiming he could play in a variety of positions because of his ability.
“That is the problem – because he is so good, he can play everywhere and do well,” he said.
“He is one of the players that as a manager we enjoy to coach because he has pace, he has ability, and he is happy when he’s playing really well, is very positive.”
So, it appears that in a few days it will be six new faces in Liverpool’s squad - and it’s highly unlikely that Klopp will stop there.