Dejan Lovren will be sorely missed by Jurgen Klopp if he finalises a summer transfer from Liverpool, according to Noel Whelan.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-Leeds United and Coventry City striker hailed the Croatia international as a “superb” defender who would enhance any team in Europe.
AC Milan are working on a deal to sign Lovren, 29, in this window as they look to take advantage of the fact he has fallen down the centre-back pecking order in Jurgen Klopp’s side.
As revealed by Football Insider last weekend, Lovren is close to agreeing personal terms with the Serie A giants after they made clear their interest in offering him a long-term contract as well as a regular starting role.
“I’m not surprised Milan want him, he’d walk into any team you care to mention,” Whelan told Football Insider. “When fully fit, Lovren is a superb centre-back who is aggressive, dominant and difficult to play against.
“He’s actually got better the longer he has been at Liverpool, and I’m sure Klopp will not want to lose a defender like him who can step in and be so comfortable at the top level.
“Liverpool now have an embarrassment of riches at centre-back, and it’s hard to keep them all happy, especially as Virgil van Dijk never seems to get injured.
“With Matip and Gomez on the books, how much would Lovren play next season? He’d have to wait for his chance, and, at this stage of his career, you couldn’t blame him for agreeing a long-term contract with a top side where he would play regularly.”
Lovren has been a first choice for much of his five years at Liverpool since signing from Southampton in 2014.
He has made 170 appearances for the Merseyside giants and was a hugely influential player in the side that reached the Champions League final against Real Madrid last year.
Following an equally impressive World Cup for eventual runners-up Croatia, Lovren has suffered a series of niggling injuries in the last year and fallen behind Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez in the battle for central defender slots at Anfield.
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