Liverpool to add set-piece cheat code – who can get them 10 more goals next term: report

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during a training session ahead of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 match against Real Madrid at Anfield on February 20, 2023 in Liverpool, England.
(Image credit: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Liverpool are poised to add a set-piece master to their squad this summer as Jurgen Klopp looks to squeeze every ounce out of his team to get some improvement.

The Reds finished fifth in the Premier League season just gone, agonisingly close to top four – but now a squad overhaul has begun, with Klopp looking to improve his side. To get back to competing with Manchester City, the Merseysiders are looking to be smart rather than breaking the bank.

A case in point is new signing Alexis Mac Allister, who Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano has confirmed arrived for just £35 million – which is around half the price some expected.

Alexis Mac Allister signing for Liverpool Football Club at AXA Training Centre on June 08, 2023 in Kirkby, England.

Alexis Mac Allister signed for Liverpool for just £35m (Image credit: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Now, The Mail claims that dead ball specialist and relegated Southampton star James Ward-Prowse is next on the shortlist. 

The move makes plenty of sense for a number of reasons. The Saints captain will want an immediate return to the top flight to bolster his England chances and has the engine and work-rate needed for a Klopp midfield. Having just been relegated, he may not be expensive either.

But Ward-Prowse's set-piece statistics are another example of Liverpool looking to find an edge over their opponents. The midfielder scored or assisted 13 goals in the Premier League last term with a team that finished bottom of the league – many of which came from free-kicks, corners and penalties.

If Liverpool were to harness that ability, they could well find an edge over the likes of City and Arsenal, who don't have an obvious parallel in their side able to create such danger from dead balls. 

James Ward-Prowse of Southampton celebrates after scoring the team's first goal during the Premier League match between Everton FC and Southampton FC at Goodison Park on January 14, 2023 in Liverpool, England.

James Ward-Prowse of Southampton was responsible for plenty of free-kick and penalty goals last season (Image credit: Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

The 28-year-old is approaching his prime, though his current contract doesn't expire until 2026. 

Ward-Prowse is valued at €38m by Transfermarkt

More Liverpool stories

Liverpool's failed pursuit of Jude Bellingham has led to discussion over who is to blame, with This Is Anfield writing that the fault lies with both Jurgen Klopp and ownership FSG for FourFourTwo.

The Reds are looking at a number of possible alternatives, including Ryan Gravenberch of Bayern MunichInter Milan star Nicolo BarellaBrighton midfielder Moises Caidedo and Chelsea fringe midfielder Conor Gallagher. Ex-Red Jose Enrique has questioned whether the Merseysiders even needed Bellingham, anyway.

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