It may not have been the name we were all searching for but Liverpool’s first summer signing has been confirmed, Dominic Solanke. And as he is not one of those big names we can all be forgiven for not knowing much about him. If your anything like me then the first thing you will have done yesterday is head straight for Youtube and search for some sort of skills and goals montage with some heavy base to convince you that little bit more that he’s half decent. The problem with those videos is that they only show the good bits and potentially paint over the cracks. If someone did a montage of my life to Darude’s Sandstorm it might not seem such a disaster.
Anyway, thanks to some in depth research (Wiki) we’d like to provide you with some more information on our new signing and have a look at where he may potentially fit into the squad.
Solanke has spent over a decade at Chelsea as part of their youth set up in which he won the FA Youth Cup two years in a row 13/14 and 14/15. The 13/14 season Solanke scored a total of 20 goals in 25 games. The Youth Cup is not the only honour he has received, in 14/15 he was also part of the youth team that won the UEFA Youth League in which he scored 12 goals in 9 games.
More was to come from Solanke as he reached a somewhat impressive career best of 41 goals in a season (All Comps). His impressive form earned him Chelsea’s Academy Player Of The Year. Regardless of the level he clearly has an eye for goal which raises the subject of just what Jurgen Klopp will do with the forward.
A season later Solanke opted for a loan move to Vitesse, presumably frustrated at his lack of first team chances or in order to gain some experience of first team football. He was used sporadically in the Dutch league but managed to bag 7 goals in just 25 appearances. That doesn’t sound a lot, but he’s only young and to have the bottle to go to a somewhat unknown league says more about him than his goal ratio.
He also has vast International experience with England starting with the Under 16’s right up to training with the first team squad.
So where does he fit in with Klopp’s plans?
Well unless your Jurgen himself its impossible to know. My first thought was a loan, but after reading his history and clear desire to play first team football I can’t help think that he will be kept as a squad player.
Arguably Liverpool’s biggest problem last season was depth. And with European football back on the cards next season we probably need to bolster every position. He’s got stacks of experience for someone of his age and could potentially fit in for cup competitions and for squad rotation.
We have several strikers already but with Danny Ings injured and Sturridge frequently out I’m hoping Klopp has thought about the amount of games coming our way next season, particularly if we want to go far in in domestic cups too.
Solanke also has an attribute that Klopp loves, he’s versatile. predominantly he plays as a striker but can play on either wing which again increases his value to the squad in so many ways. And we all know Jurgen’s ability to work with younger players and how his team help them develop.
As previously mentioned he may not be a major signing but I’m a believer not a doubter. I trust Klopp.
I may obviously may be wrong in how he fits into the squad, if you disagree comment in the box below and give us your thoughts. If you agree, then give yourself a pat on the back.