Anfield Press interviewed the French news outlet @InsideGones giving us the latest updates on Nabil Fekir’s potential move to Liverpool.
1- Is Nabil Fekir a positive signing for Liverpool?
If Liverpool fans like players are able to get a whole stadium up, as Salah can, then yes, it’s bound to be a positive sign for Liverpool. But Nabil Fekir is more than an individual talent, he is also a player who is capable and who loves to sublimate the team, to play with and for his team. His technique allows that style of play.
He is not at all someone who thinks only of himself, he is not an individualist. He’s a football poet, and a man of action when his team needs him most. He is not someone who will do the show outside the field, he’s simple, shy in front of the media, and really focuses on the field. He has a true positive mind-set, a club spirit beyond his technical talent.
2 – Do you think Liverpool will sign Fekir?
Well, it’s been a few months since the rumors appeared, and it’s true that this season Liverpool was the first club mentioned. The media talked about the meeting between Nabil and Klopp at the beginning of the year. Clearly, the French media say that the agreement is made to be 99% done between the player and Liverpool. It still needs an agreement between the two clubs.
But Liverpool can be reassured, because Lyon is very accommodating with the players who leave the club that has formed them.
If Nabil says to President Aulas: “I want to go to Liverpool”, then Lyon will make great financial efforts to let him go there. We were able to see it recently with Samuel Umtiti, Alex Lacazette, or Corentin Tolisso.
The French media are also talking about competition with Chelsea and Atlético Madrid, Arsenal sometimes. But if Nabil agrees with Liverpool, except for a very far superior offer from the other clubs, nothing can prevent the transfer to the Reds.
3- Where do you think Fekir will play at Liverpool?
Here, it can be a little more complicated point. Nabil is in fact a very special player in his style, and it is true that in full capacity of his talent that when he is in the axis. He is really a number 10, or a second striker. He likes to turn around the striker, triggering strikes at the edge of the surface, distribute to the players on the wing, cutting long. He is a master of the game in the top of the midfield.
Honestly, Nabil has never really been at his full capacity when he played in the wings and that would spoil it to put it there. That’s why this can be a problem for Liverpool. In a 4-3-3, Nabil can’t express his talent properly. Put it in relay in midfield, it’s maybe a solution but not the best either. Perhaps Klopp has a magic recipe to make it evolve.
In all cases, a 4-4-2 or 4-2-3-1, this really is the best for him. Like Klopp did with Coutinho, he would be well behind Roberto, and could easily distribute to Mane and Salah who transplant in the axis.
It may also change the Liverpool’s way to play. I’m not watch the Liverpool championship games, but in the Champions League, Liverpool didn’t always have possession of the ball. Nabil knows very well how to keep the ball, organize the game around him. That’s what he does best, probably, with its devastating change of pace.
4- How good of a season has Nabil Fekir had for Lyon?
Nabil was simply the best Lyon’s player in the first half of the season: he really carried the team, he won the games alone. On the second half, he maintained a very good level, but a few small injuries made him lose rhythm. At the statistical level, this is his best season: 22 goals and 7 assists in 39 games and he is not a pure scorer. Decisive in the big games, like against PSG, he is also in Ligue 1 Team of the Year.
But beyond stats, he is a true technical leader on the ground. He has emerged this season as captain of the team.
5- Can you see Dembele moving to Liverpool on loan from Barcelona?
Well, in France we don’t have much information on Dembele. But what is said in Spain, is the arrival of Griezman questions his entourage. They say that he wouldn’t have a loan without purchase option. That leaves the door open to a transfer. But it would be in direct competition with Salah in Liverpool, so difficult to really consider it… especially because he really wants playing time. There is much more likely that Fekir come, and Nabil would be really cheaper.