John Barnes tells Liverpool to pursue Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice as a Georginio Wijnaldum replacement
Speaking to BonusCodeBets (h/t Liverpool Echo), former Liverpool player John Barnes has urged Liverpool to sign either Jude Bellingham or Declan Rice to free up some responsibility from Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Citing the example of Georginio Wiljnaldum who left Liverpool two seasons back, Barnes, who played 406 games for Liverpool, believes they need a midfielder of his ilk to help the right-back play to his strengths.
“Jude Bellingham or Declan Rice! We need the profile of a Georginio Wijnaldum, a strong, hard-working midfield player which will then defend which will allow Trent Alexander-Arnold to get forward.”
Trent has been criticised for his defensive errors this season and many a time he has been found lacking in defensive capabilities. Perhaps, some of it can be put down to not having a right central midfielder with a high work rate that can aid him in defence.
Now when that is not happening, our defence is leaking gaping holes which are being punished by the opposition. The ageing and injury-prone midfield at Klopp’s disposal doesn’t help either.
Bellingham has been speculated to be our primary target for the midfield in the upcoming summer transfer window but it would not be easy to prise away the young sensation with many top clubs interested in the player, including Real Madrid.
The former Birmingham City player has gone from strength to strength since making the move to Borussia Dortmund and even captained the side in the recent UEFA Champions League encounters.
Adding to it, the player would be representing his nation at the FIFA World Cup and many expect him to be around the starting eleven. This can only raise his stocks and attract even more attention from around Europe.
Rice is a brilliant defensive midfielder but carries with him a high price tag. Moreover, the likes of Chelsea and Manchester United have also been interested in him.
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However, Barnes is right that since Gini’s departure we have missed an energetic, athletic and box-to-box midfielder who can help both attack and defence. Hopefully, Liverpool are able to secure either of the two top talents mentioned around which a new-look midfield can be built.