Journalist Francois Plateau suggests potential move from Liverpool to replace Luis Diaz with AC Milan’s Raphael Leao due to Diaz’s form struggles.
Sports journalist Francois Plateau claimed that Liverpool are ready to replace Luis Diaz with AC Milan winger Raphael Leao
Journalist Francois Plateau alleged that Liverpool are planning to replace out-of-form Luis Diaz with AC Milan winger Raphael Leao. Diaz has struggled with form since returning from a knee injury last season, forcing him out for seven months.
The 26-year-old has managed to stay as the first-choice left winger under manager Jurgen Klopp despite his poor form. However, Klopp has deployed Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo in that position to rotate or substitute Diaz.
The Colombian international faced more trouble this season due to the kidnapping of his parents in his home country. Diaz received unconditional support during the turmoil as his parents eventually returned safely after days of negotiations with the kidnappers.
The Kopites adore Diaz, yet many feel his struggles could potentially shorten his time at the club. There are concerns over the Colombian’s mental health after all the traumatic events he has been through.
The 26-year-old’s father acknowledged his love for Barcelona in an interview since returning home safely. We wonder if that is a subtle hint towards Diaz’s desire to go to a Spanish-speaking country with more familiarity.
On-field, Diaz received criticism for his inability to form a better chemistry with his teammates. The 26-year-old has struggled with dribbling yet he continuously looks to dribble and shoot rather than link-up and provide assists.
Plateau used platform X to report that Liverpool are willing to offer Diaz plus cash to sign Leao from Milan. The report also claimed that the Reds consider Leao as the ‘perfect’ heir to Sadio Mane.
Leao stands at 1.88 metres, having the physical build and athleticism to hold his own in duels against any defender. The 24-year-old has incredible pace and close control to make darting runs from the flanks and take on defenders one-on-one.
The Portuguese international has good creative output, capable of delivering precise passes and crosses to assist his teammates. Physically and technically and with the versatility to play at both flanks and centrally, Leao has everything to succeed.
However, the 24-year-old has displayed a lack of consistency in overall play which keeps him away from achieving greatness. Leao lacks concentration and desire to continuously contribute to the overall game, something which is unacceptable under Klopp’s setup.
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Leao’s poor defensive contribution has attracted criticism from legendary manager Arrigo Sacchi, one of Klopp’s biggest idols. Diaz has faced fair criticism for his on-field display but he is still a far better team player than Leao. Furthermore, the Portuguese international has a highly inflated price tag which just adds to the unnecessary risk factor.