It’s a conversation football fans love indulging in; who has the best squad in the Premier League?
For a long time, it was hard to look past Manchester City and their embarrassment of riches, especially in the final third.
The emergence of Liverpool as European and Premier League champions showed Jurgen Klopp’s ability to foster a strong starting XI, but the last couple of weeks have been a potentially critical moment for the club’s progression.
Liverpool fans barely had time to digest the announcement of Thiago Alcantara’s arrival when news broke that the club had done a deal with Wolves for Diogo Jota.
The swoop for Jota further strengthens Jurgen Klopp’s forward line while narrowing the advantage Man City have in terms of depth.
Pep Guardiola was never likely to take last season lying down. City’s inability to win the Premier League or the Champions League can only be seen as a failure, and as such, they must respond, even more so after the shock 5-2 home defeat to Leicester City on Sunday.
Meanwhile, the nature of Klopp’s squad building to this point means the issue of depth will surface any time the team suffers a poor result.
Klopp has been consistent with his rhetoric, however, and took time to praise the squad’s depth in the wake of the victory against Everton in December.
“There were a lot of great football moments in that game,” Klopp said. “We made five changes. I speak a lot about the quality in the squad, so I have to show it from time to time.
“You give the responsibility to the boys, and they have to show that they can perform and what they’re made of, which is incredible. Divock’s goal, Sadio’s passes, Shaq’s everything, Adam Lallana everywhere and he had so many really really good moments. Just so many good football moments.
“They are fantastic footballers. I said before the season that there is no one in the squad who is not an outstanding footballer.”
Running parallel to his trust in his squad is a hesitation to engage in panic buys.
Why should I sign up?
Premier League champions Liverpool are looking to dominate again next season and we’ll have all the latest news on any moves they make in the transfer market this summer.
You’ll get breaking transfer news, analysis, rumours, live coverage and much more.
Liverpool correspondent Paul Gorst will also be sending an extra weekly newsletter with all the latest from behind-the-scenes at Melwood.
How do I sign up?
It’s free, easy and takes no time at all.
- First just click on this link to our newsletter sign-up centre.
- Once you’re there, put your email address where it says at the top, then click on the Liverpool FC newsletter. There are other ones too if you want them as well.
- When you’ve made your choice, press the Update Preference button at the bottom.
That’s it! Your emails will come through to your inbox from that moment on. It’s that simple.
“English football is especially obsessed with transfers,” he told Sky Sports in 2017. “In our current situation, if I’d have had three more players that wouldn’t make things easier.”
Klopp is also aware of the growing challenge the club face, not only in terms of beating City to the top but the response they will face from the rest of the Premier League.
They are no longer ‘potential Premier League champions’, that goal has been realised, and the standard has been raised.
That may force Klopp to be more ruthless, and the evidence of that can be seen in the sale of Ki-Jana Hoever and potential departure of Rhian Brewster.
While it is understandable to express concern at the sale of promising youngsters, it has seemingly paved the way for the club to facilitate deals for Thiago and Jota.
The Portuguese forward will add proven quality in the Premier League to an already talented Liverpool squad.
Klopp promised his team would go on the attack this season as they look to retain their Premier League title, and this move is him keeping his promise.
Guardiola’s men have seemingly held something of a monopoly on domestic cups at times in recent years, as their fringe players have swept away all before them.
But as Liverpool’s second string showed with the 7-2 win against Lincoln, the depth gap has arguably narrowed.
Man City will try to match Liverpool with a renewed level of ambition this term.
And because of that, we will not only see more passionate debate about who’s squad is strongest, but also perhaps another enthralling title race in the Premier League.
*Will Liverpool retain their league title this season? Have your say in the comments section below.