‘Easy to talk Koulibaly into joining Liverpool’ – Napoli star the only player Barnes would sign in January

John Barnes claims it would be “easy to talk Kalidou Koulibaly into joining Liverpool” during the January transfer window, with the Napoli defender considered to be the only player Jurgen Klopp should target.

The Reds continue to mull over their recruitment options after seeing a string of unfortunate injury problems impact their plans.

Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez have both undergone knee operations, while Joel Matip, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Fabinho and James Milner have been forced to take in spells on the treatment table.

Many have suggested that Klopp will look to ease his selection headache by spending over the winter, with several potential targets mooted for the reigning Premier League champions.

Barnes remains wary of a window that is notoriously difficult to find value in, and has spoken in the past of Liverpool making do until their walking wounded return, but even he concedes that additions may be required as the fitness issues mount.

The Reds legend has told BonusCodeBets: “If Koulibaly comes, he’s a player that could play alongside Van Dijk when he returns so it would be easy to talk Koulibaly into joining Liverpool, unlike some other top players because he’s a person that if he comes would go straight into the first team and play every match.

“Aside from Koulibaly, I don't think there’s anyone out there that Liverpool would look to get in January.”

Barnes added: “If Liverpool are unable to get anyone to improve the first team then why sign a new player?

“January is not always the best time to buy because all of the top players you want to come into your team are going to be in the Champions League still so it might be hard to convince them to come if they’re not going to be playing every week.

“If Liverpool are desperate and need somebody, they’ll get them in. But I don’t think Jurgen Klopp is a particular fan of buying in January.

“Obviously, the situation determines what happens come January if they’re top and not conceding too many goals maybe they don’t need to do that. In January you can spend a lot of money and not necessarily improve the squad.”

Liverpool have kept themselves in the hunt for further title glory despite seeing their ranks depleted, while also making positive progress in the Champions League, and Barnes expects them to remain competitive regardless of any transfer calls that are made.

He said: “Other teams will have players that will get injured, not just Liverpool players.

“If it is just Liverpool players getting injured and not Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham players then it’s going to be a factor in the title race. I don’t think Liverpool will be hit harder than anybody else.”