Liverpool have been tipped to sign a long-term "successor to Sadio Mane", who has been compared to German legend Mesut Ozil.
Bayer Leverkusen youngster Florian Wirtz has had an impressive rise in the Bundesliga, succeeding Kai Havertz as the next big thing for the side. The playmaker has drawn obvious comparisons to the now-Chelsea star, as well as World Cup winner Ozil, for his graceful passing and superb movement.
With Liverpool looking to a future after Mane and fellow frontliner Mohamed Salah – both 29 – it makes sense for the Reds to explore younger options. Salah is still locked in contract discussions with the Merseysiders, while Mane has been out of form for a while domestically.
Jurgen Klopp has not often raided the Bundesliga for stars but Eintracht Frankfurt legend and pundit Charly Korbel has backed Klopp to lure his compatriot to Anfield.
"A player like Wirtz needs an environment in which he feels comfortable in order to develop," Korbel told German outlet SportBild via Sport Witness.
"If he leaves in 2023 or 2024, he can choose the club: Barcelona, Madrid, Bayern, Liverpool. I think he would do well with Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, as the successor to Sadio Mane."
The 18-year-old is a right-footed attacking midfielder who has played mostly centrally this season. It's more likely, however, that Liverpool would deploy Wirtz on the left of their front three, in Mane's position.
Wirtz is valued at £63m on Transfermarkt.
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Mark White has been a staff writer on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, writing pieces for both online and the magazine. Over his time on the brand, he has interviewed the likes of Aaron Ramsdale and Jack Wilshere, written pieces ranging on subjects from Bobby Robson's season at Barcelona to Robinho's career, and has been to the FA Cup and League Cup finals, working for FFT.
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