Liverpool in pole position to sign €75m-rated England international

The Merseyside giants legend John Barnes reckons Liverpool should be looking to bolster their midfield, with Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham and Brighton star Yves Bissouma perfect transfer targets.

Liverpool do not look likely to be busy in the transfer market during winter, despite missing Salah, Mane and Keita due to the AFCON and the general problems of illness and injury at this time of the year.

John Barnes does not expect his ex-club to make a statement signing this month but does feel they should look to bring in one or both of the midfielders in the summer. The former England winger believes both Jude and Yves would suit the Reds’ high energy style, and they may also be players that other elite teams wouldn’t consider.

‘Jude Bellingham would be a great acquisition for Liverpool, but I can’t see him coming in January, if at all,’ said John Barnes. Liverpool look unlikely to do any business before the end of the month, especially with several footballers nearing a return from absence.

Harvey Elliott, Thiago Alcantara and Origi are all expected back early next month, while Phillips will be available again earlier than that.

When Salah, Mane and Keita return from AFCON obviously depends on results in the competition, but the final is on 6 February, so even in a worst-case scenario, they may just miss two PL matches, with Brentford on 16 January and at Crystal Palace on 23 January.