It’s amazing what a penalty shootout loss can do to a club. Just days after stuttering in the Capital One Cup final, Liverpool are seemingly reacting to the heartache by blowing up their squad. Again.
Jurgen Klopp is rumoured to have been given the go ahead to overhaul the Reds roster this summer. Christian Benteke is favoured to be among the first out of the door, while Bayern Munich forward Mario Gotze is lined up to replace him.
Should Klopp manage to pull off that switch, it can be considered a significant feat. But the chances of seeing those ambitions realised are remote to say the least.
Finding a suitor for Benteke, who was an unused substitute in Liverpool’s last two games, shouldn’t be a problem as long as the Reds are prepared to take a loss on the near-£35m they paid for the Belgian.
It’s luring Gotze to Merseyside that will prove the sticking point, as the 23-year-old appears to be linked to the League Cup silver medallists through nothing more than a connection to Klopp and an injury-ravaged season.
Gotze has only appeared 11 times for Pep Guardiola’s Bayern this season. He has missed considerable time through a hamstring injury and has only recently returned to matchday squads.
Prior to this campaign, when he has been fully fit, the versatile youngster has been a regular. Only four teammates logged more Bundesliga minutes than the diminutive forward last season, while Gotze sat in Bayern’s top 10 for minutes played in all competitions in that time.
His production when fit also makes the thought of the German giants selling him a farfetched one. The World Cup winner has already bettered his career goal tally for Borussia Dortmund, where he worked under Klopp, in less games for Bayern.
While the player clearly remains a central part of Bayern’s plans, and is an effective member of the squad when fit, the difficulty for Klopp to lure Gotze to Liverpool is clear.
Although the pair enjoyed a fruitful relationship at Dortmund, where Gotze scored 31 goals and registered 44 assists in 116 games, the youngster ultimately opted to join a higher power in Bayern and isn’t likely to be coaxed back down the footballing ladder.
Unless Liverpool win the Europa League, which is a 10/1 possibility with Ladbrokes, the Reds won’t be playing Champions League football for at least another season, while Bayern are guaranteed a spot at the top table on a yearly basis.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.