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As Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp seeks to reinforce his squad ahead of the upcoming campaign, the German is purportedly in the market for a versatile marksman with Argentine forward Angel Correa of Atletico Madrid, emerging as a target. Indeed, Foot Mercato reports Liverpool are already in contact with the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano outfit and tabled the 22 year old a contract offer worth ???2.8 million-a-year. Correa, who still has two years left on his contract in the Spanish capital is reportedly keen on a switch to Merseyside, although he is seeking ???4.5 million-a-year to leave for Anfield with Atletico preparing to sell the highly rated Argentine in order to make room for incoming Chelsea firebrand Diego Costa. The Reds are currently preparing for a Champions League campaign after finishing in a respectable fourth in Jurgen Klopp’s first full season in charge of the five time European champions, with exciting Roma winger Mohamed Salah and Chelsea starlet Dominic Solanke the only new faces to arrive at Anfield so far this summer. Klopp, who has been frustrated in his approaches for RB Leipzig’s Naby Keita and Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk is now looking to complete a deal for Correa in a bid to breathe some life into Liverpool’s stalling summer recruitment drive. Who is Angel Correa? Argentine Angel Correa’s story is an inspiring one. Brought up in one of Rosario’s most deprived areas, by the age of 12, he had already suffered two immense tragedies: the death of his father and brother. Nevertheless, that didn’t shatter his dream of becoming a professional footballer, the forwards moving to Buenos Aires to play for San Lorenzo’s youth side. Correa appeared in the 2011 youth championship and finally made his debut at 18 in the Argentine Primera Division under the management of Juan Antonio Pizzi, who would later lead Valencia. The next season, the tricky winger contributed significantly as the capital team won the title, winning plaudits for his flamboyant style. In May 2014, the then-19-year-old agreed to sign for Atletico although the deal wasn’t made official until December, when he transferred for £6 million. During his Colchoneros medical it was discovered that the Argentine had a heart tumour, and he subsequently underwent lifesaving microsurgery in New York. Incredibly, unphased by these events, Correa was back in action six months later at the South American youth championship. There, he helped Argentina to win the title and, was named player of the tournament in an outstanding display of character, a fact that, coupled with his unwavering tenacity and work rate, quickly endeared him to the Argentine faithful. Last season, The Argentina international, capped 7 times for his country, featured 47 times for Atletico, scoring eight goals and providing 11 assists in the process. In total he has 16 goals and 15 assists in 83 outings for the La Liga giants and his arrival would represent quite the coup for Liverpool. The Rosarino has a low centre of gravity, which makes him a very difficult player to defend against. He also possesses excellent technique, speed and a laudable first touch.Correa’s most obvious weakness is his lack of height, at just 5ft 8in, and as such isn’t a player likely to get on the end of many set-pieces. The other big weakness comes again from his physicality even though his low centre of gravity makes him an elusive attacker, it also means that he can struggle against physically powerful opposition. Tata Martino, the former Argentina and Barcelona manager, holds Correa in very high regard. He said: “Correa is impressive. I see a guy who has no fear, who does what he feels” while lauding his adaptability saying, “calling him into the squad is very exciting. Sometimes it’s confusing where he’s playing. He’s a player with a half-defined position. I’m not that interested in where he plays. He has the capacity for goals and he’s another option already.” Where would he fit in for Liverpool? As Jurgen Klopp’s side prepare to do battle on four fronts next season including in the UEFA Champions League, the German, first and foremost will be in need for a wealth of options at his disposal as he attempts to successfully negotiate Liverpool’s bid to reestablish themselves amongst Europe’s elite. Klopp, who intimated only last week, his desire to improve the tactical flexibility of his side would, no doubt view Correa, who is adept at numerous positions across the frontline, as an addition that would automatically advance his side. This coupled with Correa’s unquestionable mental attributes and work rate seemingly outline the 22 year old as a player that would be perfect for Klopp’s trademark pressing style, with his versatility, an invaluable commodity. Furthermore, a move, some in Spain have also suggested, would perhaps suit all parties as the Argentine has struggled for opportunities falling behind the likes of Antoine Griezmann and Kevin Gamiero in the Atletico pecking order, making only 10 league starts for the 2014 La Liga champions last term. This said, it is not clear that Klopp is desperate to land another option for his forward line after adding two attackers already so far this window in the form of Mohamed Salah and Dominic Solanke. One must concede, however, that Correa would, undoubtedly, offer Liverpool a much needed second option with his flexibility across the forward line something the Reds are crying out for. Transfer Rater (out of 6; highest being 1) 3
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