Transfer talk: The Fekir factor

Yes, trying saying that repeatedly as fast as you can while you're picking your peck of pickled peppers... After our resident god, Stu, posted the following on the previous article, I thought it might be an idea to revisit the Nabil Fekir situation for us to consider whether he's likely to start next season as a Liverpool player and also whether we want him to.


I think we can safely say that Jurgen Klopp wants to see Fekir in an LFC shirt because he and our Club already tried to sign him. I can't see any reason why manager and board would not still like this to happen, unless there are ongoing doubts over Fekir's robustness. Our first attempt to sign him did indeed fall through at the eleventh hour amidst talk of fitness issues but whether that was the true/only reasoning is anybody's guess.

The rumour mill has been rife in recent weeks with talk of that failed deal and after spending a while trying to pick the bones for hard facts, I've given up. It's reported here however that Fekir has refused to sign a new contract with current club Lyon and that as a result they're willing to sell him to the highest bidder this summer. The same publication also claims that the player himself has made Liverpool his preferred destination.

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Something that is hard fact is that Fekir has parted ways with the agent he was with during the collapsed move to Liverpool and it's reported in the above linked sources that he blames him for the deal falling through. Additionally it's stated here that Fekir had even passed a medical and we know he was pictured in a Liverpool shirt, so it does seem like it was simply a matter of dotting the teas and crossing the eyes.

Good then, now we've cleared all that up and established the viability of 'LFC meet the Fekir' the remake. We can consider whether or not we actually want him.

In basic terms Fekir is a 25 year old attacking midfield (right side) player, who stands at 1.73m tall and can also play as a centre forward. In more detailed terms here is a Squawka stats table comparing our current terrifying trio to Fekir and as you can see he fares pretty well.

They are just scores but will have been generated by collating each player's actual stats and I can post those specific category stats if people would like but wasn't sure which ones would be best - let me know and I'll do the same comparison.

(For the defence and possession scores that show minus figures the lower the number the better that player is. So Mane has the best defence score for example.)


Going by statistics alone then Fekir bests our current attacking players in three out of the four main categories and is very close to being the best in the fourth as well. Pretty compelling I'd say. How about his vital statistics though? (no Jay) Well this season across all competitions Nabil has made 36 appearances, scored 12 goals and created 7 assists. 233 minutes played per goal. Last season he made 40 appearances, scoring 23 goals and making 8 assists which equated to 141 minutes per goal. All pretty good but our Egyptian King has him well and truly beaten in the goal and assists department and that leads me nicely on to the Fekir conundrum - where would we play him?

While the number of appearances Fekir has made over the last two seasons suggests his fitness and injury susceptibility is probably fine, it seems like we have in Salah someone who plays the exact same position and gets more goals and assists to boot. And in a harder league. Fekir though can play centrally as one of his main playing positions and when you look at his attacking play as a whole, whether that be passing, dribbling, shots on target, long balls, crosses, chances created etc, stats wise he pretty much gets a clean sweep on everything. I assume then he would become our Coutinho replacing midfield dynamo slash string puller, slash a right bloomin handful for our opponents. I'm liking the sound of that. What do you guys think though?

To help you decide here is some Fekir footage (particularly enjoyable around the one minute mark) and then I feel the need for speed a poll.

It's a yes from me and to hell with the cost, incidentally Fekir's market value according to Transfer Markt is €70m but as Greg mentioned on the last thread they are often way off and it's possible we'd need to stump up more to secure Fekir's services. That said, last time we nearly got the deal done for around €60m and being that his current contract with Lyon expires in June 2020 perhaps we might even be able to drive a harder bargain should we go back in for him. Thoughts all?

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