Liverpool are rolling in Champions League cash after that surprisingly successful 2017-18 campaign, and they’ve proven yet again that they’re not shy about spending it. Today the Reds appear to have completed a deal with Roma for the Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson, paying the hysterical price of €75m to get him. Alisson’s signing absolutely shatters the previous record transfer mark for a goalkeeper, set by Manchester City last summer with the £34.7 million they shelled out for Ederson.
If it feels like Liverpool may be dramatically overspending just to bring in a pretty new shot-stopper, it might help to consider this acquisition as less of a business transaction and more an act of self-care. Liverpool’s now ex-starting goalkeeper, Loris Karius, left them in a traumatized, fragile state with his high-profile blunders, and it’s no wonder that the Pool Boys have emptied their bank accounts trying to erase the memory of this:
Both of which were easily preventable Real Madrid goals from the Champions League final last May, which Liverpool lost 3-1.
Alisson, meanwhile, has his own bad memories associated with the Reds. In the semifinals of the same competition, Liverpool put seven balls in the back of the net against Alisson and Roma, including five in the first leg at home. But that scoreline belies how reliable and consistent their new keeper became in his breakout season of 2017-18. In his 49 appearances for the Italian club, Alisson led Roma not only to the European semis past teams like Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, and Barcelona, but also a third-place Serie A finish in what could have been a rebuilding year—with only perennial number-ones Juventus allowing fewer goals. Alisson’s Brazil didn’t quite meet expectations at this summer’s World Cup, but only three goals let in (one of them an own goal) over five games still ain’t so bad.
With this move, Liverpool continue to stock the hell up on impressive new names. Even if the blockbuster move for Lyon attacker Nabil Fekir doesn’t pan out, the Reds already have four additions with obvious skills to contribute. Xherdan Shaquiri is a decent replacement winger if Mo Salah isn’t 100 percent healthy to start the season, and Fabinho from Monaco is the exact type of rock-solid defensive midfielder that every title-winning team needs. Then there’s Alisson, but most intriguing is Naby Keita, the 23-year-old from Leipzig who adds even more exuberant firepower to what was already the most exciting team in England. If you squint just a little bit, Liverpool might actually look like a full-season match for Manchester City.