Neil Jones has highlighted a ‘tendency’ from Liverpool which may see them give way to rival Premier League suitors for a Brazilian prodigy.
According to TEAMtalk, the Reds are ‘lurking’ for Gabriel Moscardo, with the Corinthians midfielder also wanted by the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea and reportedly ‘eager to move to Europe’.
However, speaking to CaughtOffside for his Daily Briefing column, the journalist pointed out that the Reds generally prefer to let South American talents flourish on this side of the Atlantic first rather than plucking them directly from their homeland.
Jones stated: “Another young Brazilian linked with a move to Merseyside is Gabriel Moscardo of Corinthians, although my information is that both Chelsea and Arsenal have shown far more interest in the 18-year-old than Liverpool have.
“Liverpool, generally, do not sign first-team players directly from South America. Their tendency in the past has been to wait and see how a talent develops once it has moved to Europe – think of Diaz, Firmino, Fabinho, Nunez, Mac Allister and Alisson as six great examples – before making their move when the player reaches their early-mid 20s.”
Jones is right in stating that, when Liverpool purchase South American players, it’s usually from other European clubs rather than the Brazilian or Argentine leagues, for instance.
In fact, the last time the Reds bought a senior player directly from a club in South America was 2011, when they signed Sebastian Coates from Nacional in his native Uruguay (Transfermarkt).
It’s understandable that Anfield chiefs may prefer to see how talents from the far side of the Atlantic adapt to playing in Europe before then bringing them to Merseyside, rather than going straight for them.
Without meaning to be dismissive of South American club football, the European game is a step up, especially at Premier League level, so purchasing a player directly from Brazil, Argentina or a neighbouring country does carry that element of a gamble to it.
Of course, the flip side is that someone like Moscardo could go to Europe for a modest sum (he’s valued at £26m, according to TEAMtalk), excel there and then cost Liverpool a far higher amount.
However, even with that in mind, the Reds would argue that the money spent on Alisson Becker, Bobby Firmino, Luis Diaz et al was still worth it, as they were buying readymade quality who’d proven themselves at a very high level.
Let’s wait to see if the Anfield hierarchy stick to their tried-and-tested formula or take the plunge and go straight for the Corinthians prodigy.