By Danny Wright
BBC Sport pundit Andy Townsend has called on Liverpool to cash in on Philippe Coutinho and sign Chelsea striker Diego Costa and Southampton centre-back Virgil van Dijk.
Barcelona are widely reported to have a strong interest in the Brazilian playmaker as they look to replace Neymar, who joined Paris St. Germain last month in a world record deal worth £198million.
Townsend, 54, is in the belief that Spain international Costa could help Jurgen Klopp help Liverpool win their first ever Premier League title if they spend up to £50million on him.
Costa, 28, has fell out of favour at Stamford Bridge and has recently made it clear that his relationship with manager Antonio Conte has reached breaking point.
However, according to Townsend, the former Atletico Madrid star could become Liverpool’s hero if they signed him before the summer transfer window slams shut.
“I think if Adam Lallana was fit, if he wasn’t out for a couple of months, I think that would have made it slightly easier for Jurgen Klopp to consider [the sale of Coutinho],” said Townsend on BBC 5 Live, as shown on the radio channel’s official Twitter account on Monday night.
“If you sell Philippe Coutinho for £120million, go and buy Diego Costa for £45million or £50million and Virgil van Dijk.
“And I tell you what, they will be a lot closer to winning the league than if they kept Philippe Coutinho. That’s just logic”
'LFC should sell Coutinho, buy Costa and van Dijk – they'd be a lot closer to winning the league' – Andy Townsend
— BBC 5 live Sport (@5liveSport) August 14, 2017
Costa has been in hot form for Chelsea over the past few seasons as he lifted two Premier League titles of his own.
However with the arrival of Alvaro Morata at Stamford Bridge and Michy Batshuayi finally breaking into the first-team, 15-times Spain international Costa doesn’t look likely to build on the 52 goals he has already scored in England’s top-flight.
In other Liverpool news, Stan Collymore has urged the Reds to not fall into this trap after the potential sale of Coutinho.