Liverpool are set to ignore one of their own players who has been compared to Sadio Mane and Adam Lallana as Jurgen Klopp hunts more signings. Curtis Jones is nearing a return to fitness but his manager is still keen to add new faces to his squad.
Jones had a strong end to last season and was a regular starter for the first time in the Premier League. He was named in the starting XI for 11 matches in a row as the Reds gave it their best shot of finishing in the top four.
They ultimately fell short and had to settle for a fifth-placed finish. However, Jones earned plenty of plaudits for his performances, especially from Klopp.
He was named on the bench for the opening game of this season away to Chelsea, coming on in the second half. However, he missed the visit of Bournemouth on Saturday due to an ankle injury.
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Liverpool have lost five midfielders this summer and have brought in three new faces. Wataru Endo was the latest acquisition and he made his debut against the Cherries.
Jones isn’t expected to be out for long with his ankle problem and could return against Newcastle on Sunday, if not for the clash against Aston Villa the following weekend. But Klopp clearly doesn’t believe Jones will give enough depth to his midfield options.
A number of midfielders continue to be linked with a move to Anfield. Bayern Munich star Ryan Gravenberch is on the Reds’ radar, while moves for Kalvin Phillips and Sofyan Amrabat have also been mooted ahead of the September 1 transfer deadline.
It could knock Jones further down the pecking order despite him previously being compared to two Liverpool heroes. One of Jones’ academy coaches claimed he was a hybrid of former team-mates Mane and Lallana.
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Speaking in December 2020, Jones welcomed the comparison but was shocked when he first heard it. He told talkSPORT: “I’ve not really ever compared myself to another player. I would always say that my style of play is similar to players that have a bit of flair in a game, to be confident on the ball and stuff.
“To be referred to as [similar to] Mane and Lallana, wow! Mane is just a different level in terms of playing – he finished fourth in the Ballon d’Or.
“I spent two years around Lallana and the stuff he used to do in training, I was blown away by it. To be referred to as those two, I’ll take it.”
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