Phil Thompson believes the signing of combative midfielder Naby Keita could help to propel Liverpool back into contention for the Premier League title next season.
The Reds have struggled to keep pace domestically this season and are currently 17 points adrift of league leaders Manchester City, although Jurgen Klopp‘s side hold the upper hand in Europe after defeating City 5-1 on aggregate in the Champions League quarter-finals .
Liverpool have already reached an agreement to sign Keita from RB Leipzig for £48m in the summer and Thompson believes the Guinean will add some much-needed steel to Klopp‘s midfield as the Reds look to mount a serious title challenge next season.
“They’ve already strengthened with the signing of Naby Keita from Leipzig. I think he is absolutely terrific,” said Thompson.
“I was watching him against just last week in the Europa League and my goodness, this guy will probably give us what we’ve lacked.
“In that three behind the front three – he gives you goals, he gives you assists, he gives you energy and he’s a nasty little character.
“There is only James Milner who will really put his foot in and I think this guy could be a real sensation in the Premier League.”
Thompson also believes Klopp needs to strengthen up front, with only Danny Ings and Dominic Solanke providing cover for first-choice striker Roberto Firmino.
“A bit of experience in the striker department would help out,” said Thompson. “We’ve got Danny Ings there who has not played a great number of games and Dominic Solanke.
“Two really good players, but we need a really experienced one at the top level. If it was me, I would still be looking at another central defender.”