Only Erling Haaland beats Bundesliga teenager and Liverpool set to face Man City for € 100million transfer
Four goals and four assists in five games. These are eye-catching stats for any player, in any league. When it’s an 18-year-old midfielder who posts these numbers in the Bundesliga, it’s remarkable. So it’s no wonder that Liverpool, Man City, Bayern Munich and many other clubs are interested in a move for Florian Wirtz.
Of course, this interest predates Wirtz’s impressive start to the season; the Bayer Leverkusen starlet has long been seen as a top prospect. However, the explosive start to 2021/22 will certainly have boosted interest from top teams: only Erling Haaland, arguably Europe’s hottest property at the moment, has more combined goals and assists in the Bundesliga.
Not only that, but Wirtz put in his exceptional numbers from far fewer minutes than Haaland. Having missed the first game of the season, he started the next two from the bench. He has only completed one full 90 yet. As a result, his goals and assists for 90 are currently barely believable at 2.47. Haaland, by comparison, posted 2.2 90-goal contributions in the early stages of the Bundesliga.
No one is suggesting that Wirtz can maintain these numbers. If he did, he would already have a strong case for being the best player in the world. However, if the young German is far from being able to claim such a claim, there is no reason why he cannot aim for such high heights. Bayern Munich are believed to be leading the way for those wishing to bet on their future, while Man City have reportedly carried out the most in-depth screening of English clubs, but Liverpool are also credited with an interest.
Wirtz has already been selected by the German national team. He is part of a new generation of exciting talent: he assisted the opening goal of Karim Adeyemi, his prolific compatriot who has also been linked with Liverpool. Signing the two would be one of the most exciting transfer windows in recent memory.
Naturally, such an international pedigree at such a young age means that Wirtz wouldn’t be cheap. Indeed, a report claims that Leverkusen would demand up to 100 million euros. It will also inevitably be difficult to resist Bayern Munich’s openings, given the almost automatic journey of young German talent to perennial Bundesliga champions. Man City’s financial might is no secret either. However, Liverpool are expected to push hard for the teenager. The mix of creativity and prolific scoring of an attacking midfielder position screams of a possible Roberto Firmino heir in the false nine role.
Add to that the fact that Wirtz averages 20.68 pushes for 90 (FBRef), or over 77% of his positional peers in Europe’s top leagues, and it becomes clear that he would fit in like a glove in the Liverpool by JÃ¼rgen Klopp. It’s unclear how long the German coach will stay at Anfield, with 2024 often mentioned as a departure date, but what better way to put the team in good stead for the future than to give Wirtz a few years of education under both Klopp and Firmino? Bringing in a new generation of talent shaped by Klopp is surely the best way to minimize disruption when it comes to eventual succession.
A transfer addition in Wirtz’s mold would suddenly make Liverpool look very well equipped for the future. In defense, Joe Gomez and Ibrahima KonatÃ© are the natural heirs of Virgil van Dijk and JoÃ«l Matip. In midfield, Fabinho still has many years in the tank, while Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott emerge ahead of him. The attack has Diogo Jota, but needs at least a more exciting prospect to have a chance to pass properly from the dreaded trident of Firmino, Mohamed Salah and Sadio ManÃ©.
Erling Haaland is a Bundesliga man who would certainly fit that record, but Florian Wirtz may well be the one Liverpool should go all out to sign in next summer’s transfer window.