The genius £25m Juventus transfer raid that take Liverpool's attack to the next level

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Reports suggest Liverpool could get a cut-price deal for one of their big summer transfer targets

Another week begins, and so a fresh round of rumours link Liverpool with a slew of different players, some more plausible than others – but the story which seems to have caught the most eyes in the past 24 hours is a report from Italy suggesting the club could sign alleged long-term target Federico Chiesa for a fee in the €30-40m region (£25-34m). But would the Italian international represent good value for money? And just how reliable are the reports in the first place?

Football fans who don’t get to watch too much Italian football will likely know Chiesa best from his starring role at Euro 2020, when he scored two of his seven goals for the Azzurri and was named in the team of the tournament as Italy took the trophy back to Rome. Not long before that, a 10-goal season with Fiorentina had earned him a move to Juventus in a deal which may have cost them up to €60m (£50.7m) in total.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But since 2021, Chiesa has had some ups and downs. He started brightly in Turin but suffered a season-ending anterior cruciate ligament injury in his second campaign and ended up scoring just four leagues goals over two seasons and 35 matches. He pulled things back in the 2023/24 season, scoring nine times in Serie A, but there’s a sense that the jury is still out on him and that new Juve manager Thiago Motta isn’t entirely convinced by him. To complicate matters, his contract with the club runs down next summer and negotiations on a new deal have hit an impasse.

Hence the reports suggesting he could be on his way to Anfield, although other sources suggest that Newcastle United and Manchester United could be interested too, and hence the relatively affordable price tag, which could be as little as half of what Juventus paid for his services in the first place. But what would he offer Arne Slot’s new side if he did make the move?

Although extremely versatile, given Slot’s tactical preferences and Liverpool’s line-up under the departed Jürgen Klopp it seems fair to assume that he would most play on the left of a front three, one of his favoured roles – even when played more centrally by Juve, he tends to ply the left-sided channels whenever possible. And he’s extremely effective in those channels – his canny movement and genuine pace makes him a headache to mark and he’s adept at finding and exploiting little pockets of space between defenders.

As for his ability once he finds gets the ball in those spaces, his quality is undeniable – he’s a fine finisher, although he often receives the ball wide enough that he looks to set a team-mate up rather than score himself, and his dribbling ability, speed and technique mean he generates plenty of chances for those around him. He only managed two assists last season, but he generated 6.2xG’s worth of chances.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

He does have one slight weakness in his passing game, and a little more accuracy with the kind of quick one-twos and interchanges that crop up naturally given the way he attacks spaces around the edge of the area would serve to make him even more threatening, but ultimately he’s productive (if hardly on the level of someone like Mohamed Salah), dangerous and can really stretch a defence.

The only real question mark concerns his fitness, although this season did imply he’s gotten over the worst effects of his ACL injury – he played 37 domestic matches, only missing a handful during the winter due to minor knocks, and started 29 of them.

On paper, he looks like a natural fit for Liverpool. There remains a chance that Luis Díaz leaves and in that case they would need a new left-sided forward, and like Cody Gakpo and Diogo Jota he’s more than capable of playing as a deep-lying striker through the centre as well. He won’t score 20 goals a season, and there’s an argument that Liverpool need a more consistent goalscorer up front, but he will drive the team forward and create chances while fitting in with a fast-moving, high-pressing strategy. Assuming the medical team are happy enough, he should be a very fine signing at anything less than £35m.

But will he really make the move? The rumour stems from a story in Tutto Juve written on Sunday which is all of one paragraph long, and itself cites Italian outlet Gazzetta dello Sport – but while Gazzetta did indeed carry a piece suggesting that Chiesa is “expendable” and that Juventus are unwilling to pay him as much as he wants for a new contract, they didn’t mention Liverpool or a price tag, and there appears to be no source for the €30-40m claim whatsoever.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

And the Liverpool connection is arguably more historical than anything else – they were linked with him ahead of the January transfer window and it’s one of the names that has circled round a few times over the spring without anything concrete being reported by reliable sources. That doesn’t mean Liverpool aren’t keen on Chiesa, and on paper it’s a deal that would make a lot of sense in both footballing and economic turns for all parties, but does mean that the story is based on plausible guesswork and hearsay rather than rock-solid facts. But if they do indeed have Chiesa in their sights, and if Díaz does depart, then signing Chiesa looks like a very good way to spend any money they receive for the Colombian.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.