The inside story of Liverpool’s signing of Takumi Minamino that was six years in the making

Liverpool FC v RB Salzburg: Group E - UEFA Champions League

Liverpool officially completed the signing of Takumi Minamino in a £7.25 million deal on Thursday.

The Japanese international completed a medical on Merseyside on Wednesday, clearing the road for him to sign a sparkling five-year deal at Anfield.

The 24-year-old has been mightily impressive this season for RB Salzburg, wracking up a number of impressive performances in the Champions League.

He especially caught the eye while playing against his new employers, scoring a sumptuous volley in front of his soon-to-be fans.

However, any talk that Minamino's performances in the last few months are the reason Liverpool swooped for his signature are hogwash.

In fact, The Mirror is reporting that Liverpool's signing of the Japanese international has been six years in the making.

Sporting Director Michael Edwards is fast developing a reputation of a man who knows how to get things done and the pursuit of Minamino proved to be no different.

For the last six weeks, Edwards has been in amicable talks with his counterpart Christoph Freund at Salzburg as they prepared for the January deal.

Having formed a very good bond with Freund and the whole Red Bull organisation, Edwards was made privy to an incredibly crucial piece of information that gave him the edge over rival clubs.

KRC Genk v RB Salzburg: Group E - UEFA Champions League

It became known to Edwards and his team that Minamino had a minuscule release clause inserted into his contract that would make him one of the bargain buys of the decade.

Having watched the 24-year-old for over six years, tracking his data and statistical performances from Japan to Austria, Edwards jumped at the opportunity to wrap up a deal before Christmas.

He knew the Japanese international was in high demand and wasn't about to miss out on the opportunity to land one of the most exciting talents in world football at the moment.

Edwards and his substantial recruitment team will know better than anyone that they have got Minamino for an absolute steal, and you can imagine there'll be some pretty smug faces around Melwood today.

Off the field, Minamino provides a doorway into the far-east market for the Reds as they switch New Balance for Nike in a bid to branch out into Asia.

It just makes so much sense for Anfield side and is another sign of how healthy the club is at the moment.

Minamino is a perfect fit and will add an entirely different element to Klopp's incredible side.

No wonder the German has been in such high spirits of late - Liverpool are back.

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