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Scouting For Klopp: Who Is This ‘The Jewel’ (La Joya)? Does He Fit Liverpool’s Profile?

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Reports this month stated that Liverpool are interested in signing West Ham loanee, Manuel Lanzini. The Argentine is aware of Liverpool’s interest and said that he is flattered by it. He then added that he is happy at West Ham.

We do not know if Liverpool really want to but Lanzini, but he is definitely an exciting talent. Here is our scout report on Manuel Lanzini.

Basic Player Profile

Manuel Lanzini was born on 15th February 1993 and now he is 22 years old. The Argentinean is 167cm tall (About 5 feet and 8 inches) and weighs 59 kg. He is a natural attacking midfielder and is right footed. He could also play on the either wings. He is currently on loan at West Ham from Al Jazira (UAE). Lanzini is nicknamed ‘The Jewel’ (La Joya)

History of ‘The Jewel’

Lanzini started his career at the River Plate (Argentina) academy. Soon, he made his senior team debut for River Plate when he was 17. One year after his debut for River Plate, he moved to the Brazilian club, Fluminense, on loan. There he scored five goals from his 37 appearances (in all competitions). He took the number 10 shirt after he returned to River Plate. He scored his first goal for River Plate in the first game of the season (2012-13). He continued at River Plate for another season and scored 13 goals from his 69 appearances in all competitions. In August 2014, he moved to the UAE club, Al-Jazira for a fee of 7.5 Million Euros. There he scored eight goals from 29 appearances in all competitions. He was constantly scouted by clubs from top leagues. Then, during the summer transfer window of 2015, he moved to West Ham on loan with an option to make the move permanent. He made his debut on 6th August in a UEFA Europa League third qualifying round match against FC Astra Giurgiu, starting the match and scoring in the third minute, but the team lost 2–1 (4–3 on aggregate) and were eliminated. His first league goal for West Ham came against the club who want to buy him, Liverpool. He also assisted Mark Noble to score in the same match where West Ham defeated Liverpool 3-0 at Anfield. He has made 11 appearances for West Ham so far and has already scored four goals and assisted two. He is turning out to be a key player for West Ham alongside Dimitri Payet. Lanzini was likened to Manchester City playmaker, David Silva, by West Ham manager Slaven Bilic.

Playing Style

Lanzini is a creative midfielder who can score and also assist. He has a very strong finishing. He also is good at dribbling, passing and holding on the ball. His weaknesses are crossing and defensive contribution. Both of those attributes are not necessary if you are playing as the attacking midfielder. His balance and ball control is also good. Bilic was right to compare him with David Silva. Lanzini’s playing style indeed has some similarities to that of Silva. He also has a good speed. He is good enough to play in the premier league.

The Writer’s Say

Lanzini is a talented player and he has already proved that he is good enough to play in the premier league. West Ham have made a great signing in Lanzini. But the question is ‘Do Liverpool need Lanzini?’ There are two dimensions for this question. Firstly, Is he good enough for Liverpool? He has proved his worth at West Ham, but Liverpool might be too big for him. He could prove me wrong though. Secondly, Do Liverpool need more attacking midfielders considering the fact that they have already got Firmino, Coutinho, Lallana and Ibe? Lazar Markovic is on loan at Fenerbahce and he will be returning next season. Liverpool also have young players like Teixeira, Ojo, etc… waiting for their chance. Lanzini cannot get a first team spot as long as Firmino, Coutinho, Lallana and Ibe are here. He will find it difficult to get playing time at Liverpool. Liverpool should be trying to buy players who can make their starting line-up stronger. Anyways, if Liverpool buys Lanzini, I will back him and hope that he proves me wrong.