Liverpool could slash £19m from wage bill to make Xabi Alonso’s job easier | Football | Sport

Liverpool could cut almost £19million from their annual wage bill to help make life easier for Jurgen Klopp’s successor. The Reds must replace the legendary German manager at the end of the season and former midfielder Xabi Alonso is the favourite to take the reins.

Alonso has a tough task filling the void left by Klopp, even despite his long-standing connections to the club. But Liverpool could free roughly £360,000 per week from their wage bill to give the Spaniard some extra finances to utilise in the summer transfer window.

While Liverpool have a squad readymade to challenge in the Premier League and the Champions League, Alonso would no doubt like to reshape things in his image somewhat. Alejandro Grimaldo, Victor Boniface and Granit Xhaka are among the successful signings he has made at Bayer Leverkusen.

Yet the finances at the Bundesliga club – where the highest-earning player is said to be on around £100,000 a week – pale in comparison to at Liverpool. The Premier League giants have 13 players on more than that amount.

But two of them could be on their way out this summer, which would help free up some funds for Alonso to use on any areas of the squad he might want to bolster. Thiago Alcantara is a former team-mate of the Spain icon’s from their time together at Bayern Munich.

However, the 31-year-old former Barcelona man is destined to leave at the end of the season with Klopp. He may already have played his last match for Liverpool after suffering an injury against Arsenal. That was his first game back in 10 months and he only entered the pitch with five minutes left.

Given he’s on £200,000 a week and is out of contract in July, his days are numbered. Only captain Virgil van Dijk and top goalscorer Mohamed Salah earn more than the classy midfielder.

Likewise, Joel Matip is out of contract at the end of the season. Were Klopp staying, Liverpool might have handed the Cameroonian, also 31, an extra one-year deal. That would allow Matip to rehabilitate from his long-term knee injury without the pressure of needing to immediately find a new club.

Klopp’s exit makes it likelier though that the £100,000-a-week centre-half instead moves on as a free agent. That would leave a hole in the squad for a senior left-footed centre-back, a signing which Alonso would surely look to make given the fluidity he likes his team to have within formations.

And a third player who could leave for nothing is the £60,000-a-week back-up goalkeeper Adrian. At the club since 2019, the Spaniard has not made an appearance since the Community Shield in July 2022. Liverpool might prefer to have a homegrown keeper as third choice.

After all, the Reds will have trouble filling the homegrown spots in their Premier League and Champions League squads with many of their players still too young to be eligible. Harvey Elliott, Conor Bradley and Jarell Quansah, for example, are several seasons from being able to take those slots.

Offloading Thiago, Matip and Adrian would free up £360,000 a week overall which amounts to roughly £18.72m across a whole year. It is more than Joe Gomez (£4.4m a year), Ibrahima Konate (£3.6m), Luis Diaz (£2.9m), Wataru Endo (£2.6m), Harvey Elliott (£2m) and Curtis Jones (£780k) earn per season combined.

With the money also available for transfer fees, it would give Alonso the chance to make some of his own signings immediately. Perhaps he might even look to bring in a player or two – like Florian Wirtz or Piero Hincapie – from Leverkusen.

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