‘Klopp may have a signing up his sleeve’ – Liverpool’s Werner snub no surprise to McManaman

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Jurgen Klopp’s decision not to pursue Timo Werner should come as no surprise, says Steve McManaman, with Liverpool likely to have another signing “up their sleeve for the summer”.

The Reds had appeared to be leading the chase for the prolific Germany international striker who had left the door open for those at Anfield to make a move.

Despite the regular rumours, however, Werner appears destined to end up in the Premier League at an alternative destination.

Chelsea have agreed to trigger the £54 million (€60m/$68m) release clause in his contract, with the Blues now in the process of trying to tie up a deal with RB Leipzig.

Questions have been asked as to whether Liverpool will live to regret their decision not to make a formal approach, but McManaman believes Klopp has his sights set on other targets – with the Reds also being heavily linked with the likes of Borussia Dortmund winger Jadon Sancho and Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly.

The former Reds star said on BBC Radio 5 Live: "I think it's going to be difficult this year for teams to spend a lot of money in the current climate. Teams are losing money, we know that, there's no gate receipts, sponsorship deals will have to be rebated.

"I don't think Liverpool will have the year they had when they bought Alisson and Virgil van Dijk but I don't think they actually need that much to challenge again next year.

"It's a case of picking and choosing your position, so a very sensible, prudent signing and maybe a couple of younger players joining the squad should suffice.

"You'd love them to go and buy a superstar but when has Jurgen Klopp gone out and bought a superstar that was at the tip of everyone's tongue? Mo Salah and Sadio Mane, at the time, were signings that came out of left-field to a certain extent.

"You never know with Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp, they've done a great job in the past with signings and maybe they've got one up their sleeve for the summer."

Timo Werner RB Leipzig

McManaman is not overly concerned about having seen the Reds turn their back on Werner, with the presence of Salah, Mane and Roberto Firmino on Merseyside making the addition of another forward less of a priority.

He added: "It wasn't a surprise for me. I spoke about Timo Werner a month ago. I think he's a great player and can improve to be a better player, like with Kai Havertz, but if they joined Liverpool now they wouldn't get into the starting XI.

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"That's a major problem when you're shelling out £50, 60, 70m for a superstar player in Germany, you can't then bring them to your team and put them onto the bench for half a season.

"I think he's a really good player and a great goalscorer and he'll suit Chelsea because of the forward options they've got at the moment. They're crying out for a Timo Werner to be very honest.

"He might not get into Man City's team, so he's not one for them and I think it's exactly the same for Liverpool. I think we just put Werner with Liverpool because of Klopp, that's all it was. Klopp's said nice things about the players but he would do as a manager as his record speaks for itself."