Transfer Talk: Emre Can to Liverpool

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Already having completed a transfer of Rickie Lambert from Southampton in the final week of May, Liverpool has continued their pursuit of an improved squad for their 2014-15 campaign and beyond. The club has confirmed on Thursday that Emre Can is set to join the squad in early July on a transfer from Bayer Leverkusen for a reported 10m fee.

Just 20 years old, Can is already a proven talent having played in Bundesliga, one of the world’s top leagues. In the 2012-13 season, the midfielder made a total of four appearances for Bayern Munich, netting one goal. In the following season, Can made the move to Bayer Leverkusen on a four year deal and went on to become an integral part of the club’s fourth place finish in Bundesliga. With 39 total appearances, 32 of those being starts, for his club last term, Can picked up 3 goals and 3 assists. An impressive debut season with the club.

A midfielder by trade, Can also has made appearances at the left-back position. With Liverpool’s concerns at the back line in the 2013-14 season, conceding a whopping 50 goals (the most by any of the top four clubs in the Premier League table), this will be an area of much needed improvement to not only make another run at a Premier League title, but also to venture deep into the Champions League tournament. Can brings with him versatility to Liverpool, something that may be able to push him into the starting XI sooner than later with his new club. Per, Can made 12 appearances at central midfielder and 10 at left defender for Bayer Leverkusen.

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As the Lambert transfer was more to add a proven, veteran player to the squad, the Can transfer could prove to be a nice deal for not only the upcoming season, but also seasons to come. He has the chance to learn from Steven Gerrard at the central midfield position and potentially be the successor to Captain Fantastic’s role on the pitch. But as Gerrard still will be at the helm of Liverpool’s squad, Can will most likely slot into the lineup alongside him to provide both an offensive, with his dribbling abilities, and defensive presence.

Until Can’s role in the squad is known for the upcoming season, he will definitely be more “watch list” material to begin for your fake football squad. But, as he could press players like Joe Allen, Jordan Henderson and Lucas Leiva for time on the pitch, Can has the potential to flourish in Liverpool’s counter-attack style of play as a defensive minded midfielder that will push forward to support the attack. As we saw last season, Liverpool has the ability to push to the top of the league in the goals for category with the playmakers that they have so the opportunity to pick up points in your midfielder slot will be there, as long as the time on the pitch is.

As Can is still young and a bit raw, the ability is certainly there. If he continues to develop at the current pace, Can has the potential to turn the expected rotational role into becoming a fixture in the starting XI as that deep lying, but attack relevant midfielder that Gerrard has proven to be. Might be a bit ambitious at the moment, but could Emre Can be the next Captain Fantastic? Only time will tell.



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