Why Liverpool should make a summer swoop move for Yehven Konoplyanka
Liverpool go into this summers transfer window much stronger than they were last season after a remarkable campaign in which they secured Champions League football for the first time in five years. Those famous European nights are back at Anfield once ...
Liverpool go into this summers transfer window much stronger than they were last season after a remarkable campaign in which they secured Champions League football for the first time in five years.
Those famous European nights are back at Anfield once again and Brendan Rodgers has already started his work by identifying his interest in bringing a number of players to Liverpool, like Adam Lallana and Ukrainian winger, Yehven Konoplyanka.
The latter was a serious target in the January transfer window, but the move did not materialise after a deal was unable to be agreed. However, if Rodgers is to build a competitive squad which can compete on multiple fronts next season, then the Ukraine international could be a shrewd move.
Currently plying his trade for Dnipro, Konoplyanka’s ability is not at the highest standard, but he has showcased his potential during his national sides exploits and also in the Europa League.
A tricky and pacey winger, Konoplyanka has a number of tools in his locker and would provide a different outlet for Rodgers’ side. Like Raheem Sterling, he is the perfect man for the counter-attack and would fit what Rodgers wants in his team – youth, pace and quality.
The Ukrainian created 8 chances in the Europa League this season in his seven appearances and scored an impressive four goals. He is deemed a two-footed player, although he did score all four goals with his right-foot during Dnipro’s European campaign.
Konoplyanka, despite his small stature, wins on average 56% of his duels with his impressive showings in Europe. He has won 10/20 tackles he attempted in the competition and is astute with the ball at his feet, having won 20 fouls in just seven appearances this season.
His tricky nature has become a key asset of his game and along with his pace he can offer Liverpool an exciting avenue to explore. He has attempted 64 take-ons in the Europa League this season, completing 32 of them (50%).
He has a neat pass accuracy of 82% and his shot accuracy is also excellent. He hits the target 72% of the time and with Liverpool’s prolific finishing this season, the young Ukrainian will fit in just well. His 6 shots off-target are a sign of the youngster trying to pick off teams, with 13 efforts going on target – yielding his four goals in the competition.
With the likes of Suarez and Sturridge occupying the central role, Sterling will be drafted out to the wide or through the middle like this current season. Liverpool could turn to Konoplyanka who will provide them with a different option. His explosive pace, neat feet and thriving ambition makes him the perfect fit.
Rodgers recently stated it is not all about youth. He is looking for players who are good technically and are willing to learn. Konoplyanka most certainly fits that category and under the right stewardship he could prove to be a fantastic buy if Brendan Rodgers and co. decide to make another bid for the Dnipro star.