Arthur Melo has just told Alexis Mac Allister why he should sign for Liverpool over Man Utd
It’s a transfer that all parties will say hasn’t worked out. To be frank, it’s proven an exercise in futility.
Arthur Melo arrived at Liverpool on summer transfer deadline day from Juventus amid a midfielder injury crisis. Yet as his time at Anfield comes to a close, it’s looking highly unlikely he’ll again feature. When scrolling through the history books down the line, just one 13-minute substitute appearance will be how Arthur will be remembered.
It wasn’t supposed to be that way, of course. The former Barcelona man had been earmarked for a more prominent role yet a thigh injury that required surgery in October put paid to such a plan. Since returning to fitness, chances have been at a paucity. The highlight has been three unused substitute appearances.
Arthur confirmed earlier this week that he’ll be leaving Liverpool at the end of the campaign. The club, to no great surprise, will not be activating the clause to buy him for €37.5 million. Still, the interview he gave to GOAL was a chance for Kopites to hear from the 22-cap Brazil international for the first time since he signed. It was an opportunity for him to give his side of the story.
In truth, it could have been easy for Arthur to have a thinly-veiled dig at Jurgen Klopp for his dearth of appearances. He could have chided the Liverpool manager for not giving him a chance since overcoming his injury more than two months. Before the Reds' recent run of six straight victories, they scantly impressed and endured problems in the middle of the park. Arthur might have implored he could have made a difference and cried injustice in the hope that any potential suitors heading into next campaign take note.
Instead, Arthur's reaction was the antithesis. He extolled Klopp in the highest manner. “Since I arrived, [Jurgen] Klopp has treated me really well," Arthur said. “It is an honour for me to work with Jurgen. He is one of the best coaches in the world, he has always spoken well of me, he is someone incredible and the treatment has always been really good, elegant and special."
A classy and dignified response. And any potential target who is debating whether to move to Anfield should simply heed Arthur’s comments.
There will undoubtedly be competition for the majority of players Liverpool want to sign in the summer transfer window. Good players always attract interest from multiple clubs.
Alexis Mac Allister has been heavily mooted as one of the Reds’ top targets ahead of a midfield rebuild. The Brighton man has a reported price tag of £70 million slapped on his head and is said to also be tracked by Manchester United.
Meanwhile, Mason Mount is reportedly coveted by Arsenal as his future at Chelsea remains highly uncertain. Matheus Nunes and Ryan Gravenberch have been linked to clubs other than the Reds, too.
Rival clubs may be able to offer something Liverpool cannot - Champions League football in 2023-24. Klopp's side still look unlikely to qualify for the competition despite their recent fillip. While playing the Europa League is no longer as ignominious as it was once considered, it's still the inferior tournament by a long way. Some players simply may not entertain the idea of dropping to Europe’s second tier.
However, the lure of Klopp remains intact. Not just because he's won every trophy possible at Anfield but what it's like to work under him every day. Football fans profusely only see what happens on match days. There are social media clips and press conferences, of course, but supporters are not privy to the majority of the goings on at the AXA Training Centre - the venue players spend the bulk of their time.
They'll want to be coached by someone who's not just savvy on the pitch but genial and genuine off it. Klopp has treated a player as far from his first team impeccably. Imagine how he would adore someone at the nucleus of his plans.