Liverpool battling Premier League rivals for signing of “monstrous” prospect

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Liverpool are battling with two other Premier League clubs for the signing of Mainz 05 attacker Brajan Gruda this summer, according to a transfer claim from Germany.

The Reds’ new era under Arne Slot will get underway on June 1st, with the Dutchman signing a three-year deal after replacing Jurgen Klopp as manager.

Having focused solely on midfield signings during last summer’s transfer window, it feels likely that new boss Slot will look to improve other areas of the pitch this time around, with help from the likes of Michael Edwards and Richard Hughes.

While Liverpool’s attack looks well-stocked with Mohamed Salah, Luis Diaz, Darwin Nunez, Diogo Jota and Cody Gakpo in the squad, there are arguably question marks about all of them, for different reasons.

Salah is 32 this summer, and arguably not quite the force he was, while Diaz and Nunez’s finishing has been a problem, as have Jota’s injuries.

More is also needed from Gakpo, who is an effective player but is yet to fully explode since joining from PSV Eindoven in early 2023.

According to Bild, Liverpool are interested in completing the signing of Gruda this summer, with the 19-year-old seen as a big talent in Germany, scoring four goals and registering three assists in the Bundesliga in 2023/24.

Newcastle United and Aston Villa are also believed to be in the mix, though, in what looks set to be a potential auction for his signature in the coming weeks and months.

Gruda looks like a special prospect – one who predominantly plays behind the striker but can also shine out wide – with analyst Ben Mattinson calling him a “good ball manipulator, two way dribbler with a monstrous left foot”, adding that he is “ideal second striker profile.”

At 19, the Albanian is very much still a work in progress, so Slot wouldn’t be signing him as an immediate key man, but he could be viewed as an enormous long-term prospect who can mature into a devastating attacking player over time.

Liverpool’s attack could do with at last one new face in the summer, in order to freshen things up, and a young player with a high ceiling feels like the right way to go.

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