Jurgen Klopp stated he “cannot end the speculations” linking Thiago Alcantara to Liverpool and also left Georginio Wijnaldum’s future up in the air ahead of their Premier League title defence.
Liverpool kick off an English season as champions for the first time in 30 years when they host newly promoted Leeds United on Saturday.
Throughout the truncated close season, Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago has been touted for a move to Merseyside and Klopp declined when asked at a pre-match news conference if he would like to stop that particular strand of transfer talk from rumbling on.
“If I would invent now a word that could end speculations, I think I would become really rich,” Klopp beamed.
“I cannot end speculations as long as the transfer window is open.
“Did I mention that Thiago Alcantara is a really good player? Long ago.
“It’s nice that we are linked with him but that’s pretty much all, really. It’s because he’s a good player and Liverpool is a big club, so that’s nice.
“Apart from that, really, nothing to say about it. Maybe good for you, I cannot end the speculations.”
There could also be a midfield outgoing at Liverpool, if Ronald Koeman’s purported interest in taking fellow Dutchman Wijnaldum to Barcelona comes to fruition.
Klopp confirmed he held talks with the former Newcastle United player after he returned from international duty this week, but insisted that was nothing out of the ordinary and did not offer any guarantees on the player’s future.
What’s up everyone? pic.twitter.com/rS27oEnnDO
— Gini Wijnaldum (@GWijnaldum) September 8, 2020
“Since Gini is here I think I had 500 or 600 talks with him,” he said.
“That’s exactly the same, like always. So, nothing else to say about that.
“Of course, I speak to Gini, he came back from international duty and then we have to talk. It’s always like this and that’s all, really.
“I cannot speak about the future in a few years, but it’s all fine. It’s all good for the moment.
“You know the situation. Between Gini, me and the club everything is completely fine, apart from anything to announce to you.
“But that’s more your problem than ours because we are completely fine in this situation.”
Irrespective of the make up of his squad when the transfer window closes, Klopp is frustrated over the restrictions put on how many of them he will be able to use on each Premier League matchday.
Tomorrow, it starts all over again pic.twitter.com/FvCPdkug2P
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) September 11, 2020
Upon the league’s resumption last season following the coronavirus shutdown, teams were allowed to name matchday squads of 20 and make five substitutions during each game.
Premier League clubs voted to revert to 18-man squads and three subs, with arguments in favour of competitive balance mooted, although Klopp feels this will be to the detriment of player welfare.
“It all changes constantly,” he added. “I thought from a common-sense point of view it would be 100 per cent clear that this year – only this year and not forever – we would have 20 and five.
“It’s not about giving an advantage because we have better players and can bring five top players on the pitch.
“I really don’t like that we deal with this thing based on the wrong facts. It’s not about having advantages; it’s about players’ welfare and it’s about having the highest quality in the games for all teams.
“I was really surprised when I heard the league decided against it.”