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‘Liverpool don’t need £100m signings’ – Barnes looking for squad players rather than starters

3:23 PM WAT 28/06/2019
Jurgen Klopp Liverpool 2018-19
The former Reds midfielder believes Jurgen Klopp boasts a strong enough starting XI to make further depth the only transfer requirement at Anfield

Liverpool have no need to go and sign a player for £100 million ($127m) this summer, says John Barnes, with Jurgen Klopp requiring only minor tweaks to a squad that could do with greater depth.

The Reds have invested heavily in recent transfer windows.

Record-breaking moves for the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Alisson have been sanctioned, allowing Klopp to piece together a side capable of challenging for Premier League and Champions League honours.

The German tactician has admitted that more funds will be required in order to keep pace with domestic and continental rivals, but Barnes is not convinced that ready-made starters are needed.

The former Reds midfielder told The Liverpool Offside: “I actually feel the opposite. I’m looking for something exciting but not necessarily anything new.

“Last season we needed players like Virgil van Dijk and Alisson to come into the team to be the main pieces in the squad and maximise the potential we had.

“This year, I don’t think there are any players who will be coming in to take the place of [Mohamed] Salah, [Sadio] Mane, [Roberto] Firmino, or Van Dijk, so instead what we need to do is supplement the squad.

“I don’t think we’re going to go out and get a player for £100m to go straight into the team, but we don’t need that.”

Barnes added: “But there are players out there who can improve the next nine or 10 players after that, which is a relatively easier thing to do.

“Our current rivals, even City included, currently need a few players to improve the first XI and there aren’t that many players out there like that. We don’t need that and we’re just looking for players to improve the squad.”

Liverpool have acquired several world-class talents, but Barnes believes collective spirit is of greater importance to Klopp and his team than boasting the supposedly best players on the planet.

The ex-England international said: “The identity on the pitch is clear.

“No matter how we feel about the players in the team, there is a certain dynamic and profile that they fit under Jurgen Klopp.

“The likes of Kevin De Bruyne and David Silva are fantastic players, Liverpool under Klopp don’t want players like that. We have a team where we don’t have the best players as much as we need and have players who fit into the system Klopp has put in place.

“The teams I played for had that similar clear understanding of our identity but it’s also apparent that we also haven’t seen that in the last 15 years at the club.

“The club, the city, the fans have clear expectations of the effort and desire they want to see from this team and that’s the difference between the Liverpool team that you see now and the teams in the last 10-15 years.”

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