Liverpool transfer news: Jurgen Klopp's men 'closely following' departing Man Utd target

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Liverpool could really do with a new centre-back right now.

Unless you've been living under a rock for the last few weeks, you'll be acutely aware that the reigning Premier League champions have suffered one of the worst injury crises in recent memory.

However, what has made the list of absentees so damning for Jurgen Klopp has been the fact that so many of them play in defence, leaving him with a serious selection dilemma this week.

Liverpool's injury crisis

Virgil van Dijk was the first domino to fall when he picked up a serious ACL injury in the Merseyside Derby courtesy of a controversial tackle from Everton's Jordan Pickford.

Shockingly, though, the Dutchman isn't the only Liverpool centre-half facing the majority of the 2020/21 season on the treatment table with a knee crock.

That's because the Anfield club's misery was compounded when Joe Gomez needed surgery for an injury picked up in England training.

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Need for defensive reinforcements

That's not to mention the fact Fabinho picked up an injury of his own in the Champions League, Rhys Williams also has a knock and Trent Alexander-Arnold will be absent until December.

But it's those first two injuries, by way of ruling Liverpool's number one centre-back partnership out for so long, that has led to suggestions that Klopp will look for reinforcements in the transfer window.

The Merseyside club could either procure a short-term option to plug the gap for six months or, were the opportunity to arise, loosen their pursestrings to strengthen their defence more generally.

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'Following Upamecano closely'

Well, if the latter option is being thrown around the Liverpool boardroom, then they should look no further than Dayot Upamecano if former Norway international Jan Aage Fjortoft is to be believed.

That's because the ex-Middlesbrough player, who now works in the media for companies such as ESPN and Bild, tweeted on Sunday that Liverpool are 'closely following' the RB Leipzig man.

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Fjortoft effectively confirmed that Upamecano, who is valued at £54 million on Transfermarkt, will be leaving Leipzig next summer and name-dropped Liverpool as one of the clubs interested.

Bayern Munich are said to be in the hunt, depending on the future of David Alaba, while Manchester City and long-term admirers Manchester United are also said to be monitoring his movements.

Upamecano has been plying his trade in the Champions League this season and although he might not be available until next summer, he would undoubtedly strength Liverpool's back-four.

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GIVEMESPORT's Kobe Tong says

This would be an incredible signing for Liverpool, but the question is: would it come too late?

You only have to look at the fact Liverpool had conceded the most goals in the Premier League at one point this season to see that their defensive crisis isn't just a result of all the injuries.

As much as I rate Gomez highly, he's probably England's best centre-back, there's no reason why Klopp shouldn't dip his hand in the Liverpool coffers if a world-class defender becomes available. 

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And Upamecano couldn't fit the bill any better, especially now that Fjortoft has essentially confirmed that the France international will be there for the taking next summer.

However, Liverpool's injury woes are more immediate than that and therefore, a move for Upamecano could hinge on whether the club invests in January and if so, on whom.

Assuming it's not a world-class option you could feature for the Reds for years to come, then Liverpool could do far, far worse in 2021 than splashing the cash on a new partner for Van Dijk.

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