Liverpool can unlock Trent in midfield with unstoppable 84m star

liverpool can unlock trent in midfield with unstoppable 84m star

Liverpool can unlock Trent in midfield with unstoppable 84m star

Liverpool vice-captain Trent Alexander-Arnold was at the literal centre of an England display that left pretty much everything to be desired, with Gareth Southgate's Three Lions surviving an impressive Denmark assault to snatch a draw and take four points into their final group game of Euro 2024.

The right-back has been one of the Premier League's exceptional players of the past seven years, winning the title in 2019/20 and racking up 58 assists from 228 top-flight fixtures - behind only teammate Andy Robertson in the all-time assist-making charts for a defender.

Having long flirted with the idea of performing in central midfield, the elite-level playmaker has not performed with the authority, guile and gusto that the country's supporters hoped to have seen.

Trent Alexander-Arnold: Stats vs Denmark

Stats

#

Minutes played

54'

Touches

51

Accurate passes

35/40 (88%)

Shots

0

Key passes

3

Long balls

6/7

Dribble attempts

0/0

Duels won

3/5

Clearances

1

Blocked shots

2

Stats via Sofascore

Is this down to Alexander-Arnold, shoehorned into a position where he has no business dwelling? Or, perhaps, have England's tactics and general fluency over the past week precluded the 25-year-old from finding any decent measure of success?

Under Arne Slot, at Liverpool, he could find the perfect conditions to flourish in the centre of the park indefinitely, with the perfect attacking partner being considered to maximise his glittering talents.

Liverpool lining up Serie A star

According to a report from Caught Offside earlier this week, Liverpool have enquired about the availability of Napoli winger Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, who is hoping to leave the 2022/23 Serie A champions this summer.

The Georgia international's camp are eager for him to leave Naples but the club hopes to disabuse him of this notion, though suitors such as Liverpool could capitalise on the uncertainty.

Premier League rivals such as Chelsea are interested in signing the 23-year-old, and Fabrizio Romano has revealed that Napoli would demand €100m (£84m) for his sale.

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia's Napoli career

Napoli signed Kvaratskhelia from Dinamo Batumi for roughly €10m (£9m) in 2022, fashioning him into a deadly force down the left channel. After two campaigns, he has posted 25 goals and 26 assists across 88 appearances.

Praised for bringing "magic" to the field by the above-mentioned Romano, he's a slick and stylish dribbler with dazzling movements, flicks and tricks, gliding up and down the wing with a sense of freedom to pick out peers and unleash ferocious strikes on goal.

As per FBref, he ranks among the top 2% of attacking midfielders and wingers across Europe's top five leagues over the past year for shots taken, the top 14% for shot-creating actions, the top 3% for progressive carries, and the top 5% for successful take-ons per 90. Such metrics showcase his creative prowess and ball-carrying expertise.

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia: Serie A Stats 22/23 vs 23/24

Stats

2022/23

2023/24

Matches played

34

34

Matches started

32

30

Goals

12

11

Assists

10

6

Accurate passes

84%

86%

Big chances created

14

11

Shots taken

2.5

3.8

Key passes

1.6

1.9

Tackles

1.3

1.2

Dribble attempts

2.2 (41%)

3.0 (51%)

Duels won

5.0 (45%)

6.9 (51%)

Stats via Sofascore

Napoli might have fallen off a proverbial cliff last season but Kvaratskhelia actually raised his all-round game, and it's for this reason that Liverpool must throw the kitchen sink at securing his services, bolstering their wide options with a creative, combative, and high-class new winger.

Kvaratskhelia could unlock Alexander-Arnold

While Luis Diaz is currently Liverpool's No. 1 option on the left flank, the 27-year-old has attracted interest from Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain, with FSG touting the Colombia international at €75m (£63m).

Kvaratskhelia would be both an upgrade and a new version, tailor-made for Slot's high-pressing, energetic style of football. Slot likes to press in a manner not too dissimilar to that of Klopp but he is definitely more ball-centric, with his former Dutch Eredivisie team Feyenoord second in the possession charts last season with an average of 61.8%.

A crisp passing game and a remarkable rate of creating would allow the Georgian to prosper, with his unique array of abilities making him the perfect player to latch onto Alexander-Arnold's balls.

The £180k-per-week ace ranks among the top 1% of full-backs across Europe's top five leagues over the past year for shot-creating actions, the top 2% for progressive passes, and the top 5% for assists per 90, basically underscoring just how sharp his playmaking acumen is.

But, as was evidenced by England against the Danes, he needs runners to meet such sprayed passes. Despite creating three key passes against Denmark, Alexander-Arnold failed to impress, largely due to a lack of control. But at Liverpool, within Slot's system and partnered with Kvaratskhelia on the left, a deadly duo might just be born.

Kvaratskhelia's 3.0 dribbles per game in the Italian top flight is frankly absurd. For reference, Diaz averaged 1.8 per match in the Premier League, while Manchester City's Jeremy Doku, who has been hailed for his "frightening" speed by pundit Rio Ferdinand, also averaged 3.0 dribbles per game last term.

This suggests that Liverpool could find joy from Trent being able to spray long passes out wide to the onrushing Georgia international, who can the use his dribbling skills to get himself into positions to effect games with goals and assists on a regular basis.

With an incredibly diversified style of play, the Serie A superstar would surely be a wonderful addition to a Liverpool team in transition. A statement of intent, he would bring title-winning experience and elite athletic qualities to Slot's system.

He might not come cheap, but Kvaratskhelia - who is "unstoppable" when he gets going, according to Kulig - is one of the leading wingers on the European stage and if the funds are available to bring him to Merseyside, he simply has to be signed.

Related

Diaz sold, 216m spent: What Arne Slot's dream Liverpool XI could be

Anfield could boast quite the team come the end of the transfer window.

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