Turkish Delight for Liverpool?

Howdy partners, hope the week's started well for everyone. Now our series of strength and depth articles has narrowed down the positions we'd like to improve, I thought we could take a look at potential candidates to fill those roles.

First up, a new second string goal keeper. While Adrian has been good in part I think we all agree he's not the long term answer and neither of our youth keepers, Kelleher (21) or Jaros (18) appear close to stepping up to a senior role.

It's entirely probable we'll sign someone not yet linked with us or even no one at all but so far the player most reported as a potential new keeper is Turkish shot stopper Ugurcan Cakir.

Cakir plays for Trabzonspor whose club president, Ahmet Agaoglu is quoted as recently saying:

“Just like we did with [Alexander] Sorloth we have to sign players, make them shine and sell for a profit,”

“That is our reality. We have to sell players and replace them with the next undervalued talent.

“€10-20m has to enter the club every year. If we continue along this track we will clear our debts long-term but we must stay disciplined.”

So Trabzonspor may be open to a summer sale but is 24 year old Cakir the right player for us?

1.91m tall Cakir has a current market value of around £10m so he's affordable and his age seems about right. If we went much younger then we're back into the realms of youth players like Kelleher.

Playing in Turkey's first tier 'Super Lig' since 2016, Cakir has gained good experience helping Trabzonspor move up the table each season from 12th to now leading it. I'm not sure whether Super Lig will resume but Cakir has clearly played a significant role in Trabzonspor's rise to the top - they have the third best defensive record in the league. That's an impressive addition to his CV and now may be a good time for him to make the next step.

It's difficult to compile useful goal keeping stats as keepers are so heavily reliant on a good defence in front of them. We've one of the best in the world so it would be unfair to compare Cakir's stats to Alisson's. Instead let's take a look at Cakir in action.


Shot stopping - check. Distribution? I could only find one grainy clip and he looks pretty decent. If anyone's seen him play on a more extended basis please give your thoughts. Possibly stats could be useful here: Cakir's overall pass success for all games played this season sits at 64% versus Alisson's 86%. That tallies with other reports I've read which say Cakir's distribution still needs some work.

So he seems a good option and we could assume at Liverpool he'd continue to improve in all areas including distribution. The pertinent question then is would he be happy to join a club as backup keeper? Well when that club is Liverpool I think he'd be mad not to strongly consider it. Over the course of a season he'd get plenty of games and chance to show his worth.

The sticking point might be that Alisson's only 27 and will hopefully be with us for many years to come so the chances of Cakir, or any keeper, displacing him are slim. That puts both Liverpool and potential new signings in a quandary: we need someone good enough to play in place of Alisson without a significant drop in quality but those level players will naturally want to be first choice.

All things considered, is Cakir the right player for us? I think so, he could join the best club on the planet, make use of our world class facilities and learn from our similarly high level staff and players. Showcase what he can do on a stage where he'll be noticed and in a few season's time, if he's improved and done a good job, he moves on to become first choice keeper at another large club. We'd have benefited from his services and would also make a profit at the end - everyone's a winner.
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