This article is part of Football FanCast’s Opinion series, which provides analysis, insight and opinion on any issue within the beautiful game, from Paul Pogba’s haircuts to League Two relegation battles…
It sounds like a bit of a statement to make, but Ryan Fraser could be a better option than Jadon Sancho in January.
The Dortmund star’s future has become rather unclear in recent weeks. Being dragged off after 36 minutes against Bayern Munich didn’t please the teenager and now there are reports suggesting he could leave the club.
Liverpool are one of the sides interested in his services but they’ll face stiff competition from the likes of Real Madrid, Manchester United and PSG.
Rated at £90m according to Transfermarkt, a deal to acquire the 19-year-old is unlikely to come cheap. Couple that with the fact he’s English and it only adds an extra premium to his talents.
Signing Sancho would be a statement of intent from Jurgen Klopp. Liverpool have snapped up major deals in the form of Alisson and Virgil van Dijk, but as far as attacking signings go they’ve been quite coy.
Mo Salah cost what now looks to be a bargain price of £34m after winning the Golden Boot in successive seasons but this deal could blow it entirely out of the water. However, is there any need to even try and sign Sancho in January?
Arguably not – especially when Fraser is also a reported target. Valued at £27m, he’d come much cheaper than Sancho. His contract ends at the end of the season and it’s still unclear as to whether he’ll sign a new deal at Bournemouth.
With Liverpool lurking, it’s difficult to envisage how he wouldn’t be enticed by the prospect of potentially winning a Premier League title.
Sancho has undoubted potential but usurping Salah and Sadio Mane on the flanks at Anfield would be a considerable challenge.
The pair of them shared the Premier League Golden Boot with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang last term and have been stars out wide in recent years.
With that in mind, securing someone proven to play as back-up would be a wise idea. Spending a vast sum of money on Sancho feels pointless when he isn’t even guaranteed to start.
Liverpool have been shrewd by swooping up players like Xherdan Shaqiri and Gini Wijnaldum from less prosperous clubs and they could replicate that here.
Shaqiri isn’t getting any younger while Adam Lallana has also been linked with a move to PSG of all places.
Gathering greater squad depth and improving on the fringe players they already have would be beneficial.
It isn’t entirely beyond the realms of possibility that Klopp could favour the Scot instead.