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Liverpool and Chicago Fire wonderkid Jhon Duran

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Liverpool and Chicago Fire wonderkid Jhon Duran

Liverpool have had their fair share of wonderkids over the years. Even right now they have a few youngsters with incredible potential in Harvey Elliott and Fabio Carvalho and we can’t forget that Trent Alexander-Arnold is still only 23 years old and has been playing at the highest level for us consistently since the 2016-17 season, racking up a total of 168 appearances so far.

Then there’s the Academy which continues to produce quality talent, maybe not always to the point they’re able to break into the first-team, but at the very least the club have been able to turn a good profit, helping build a title-winning team.

Today we’re going to be looking at 18-year-old Colombian winger, Jhon Durán, currently playing in what can only be described as a breakout season for Chicago Fire in the MLS.

With the departure of Sadio Mane and our recent bad luck with injuries from front to back, what could the forward offer to this Liverpool team?

It’s worth noting however that we aren’t the only team interested in the youngster, as Chelsea have also shown interest, with both sides seemingly keener as the year goes on, after Durán joined the MLS side in January of this year.

Duran, Liverpool
Jhon Durán after scoring for Chicago Fire in the MLS. Source: Twitter

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Liverpool have reportedly sent the same scout to the US to watch Jhon Durán that they sent to Portugal to watch Luis Diaz before we signed him in January and the scouts seem quite excited by the prospect of signing the young Colombian forward.

Durán made his senior debut for Colombia in September, coming on as a substitute for Radamel Falcao in a 4-1 win over Guatemala. He also made an appearance against Mexico in a 3-2 win. 

If we had any scouts there this past weekend I’m sure they would’ve been quite impressed with Durán as he scored two goals away to Cincinnati helping them to their first win since September 11th.

So, if we were to pick up the wonderkid, what could he offer to our already rather stacked offensive lineup?

Durán is a tall option at 6’1, he’s quick and quite physically strong. While he’s not as “intricate” on the ball as our other wide options in Mo Salah and Diaz. That isn’t to say he isn’t good with the football at his feet, because he is. Quite good actually.  

Durán is a player full of confidence and he clearly believes in his own ability, but sometimes that can be his downfall, we all like to see a player have a pop, but sometimes when a way better option is on, Durán opts to take the shot instead.

But, we’ve seen that with Salah on more than one occasion and look how many goals he scores for us. However, this can be a strength too, given he finds goals from awkward angles, in tight spaces but also from distance with his play from a wide position. 

READ MORE: Fabrizio Romano says ‘don’t write Liverpool off yet’ after transfer priority claim

He could bring goals, he brings an option with strength and pace and he brings youth which, in reality, is actually a huge thing for us right now, that’s one of the reasons we’re so heavily in for Jude Bellingham after all.

At £10m Durán does seem like an interesting option, the issue you’d have is whether he would ever really get the game time for us or not, under Jurgen Klopp and Pep Lijnders. Training with our first team he would improve a lot, there’s no denying that.  

Even though Durán has been playing really well and attracting attention from across the pond, it’s safe to say that for the Chicago Fire their season hasn’t been great; they currently sit 12th in the Eastern Conference, with only 10 wins from 33 games.

Though the experts think it’s looking pretty good for them in their upcoming game on Sunday as they’re slightly ahead as 23/20 favourites, a £5 stake returns £10.75, New England Revolution are 2/1 underdogs returning £15 from the same stake. 

Liverpool, Luis Diaz, Joao Gomes
Could we really see another Colombian join the ranks, following in the footsteps of Luis Diaz before him?

You can find odds at BetMGM Illinois for upcoming MLS games, as well as the Premier League. Speaking of which, how are things looking for Liverpool as they come up on a really rough run of fixtures? Well, our next game is against Arsenal, at the Emirates. Arsenal currently find themselves top of the table and with the home advantage, they find themselves as slight favourites at 6/4, £5 stake on that returning £12.50, but if you believe in our lads then you can get 31/20 on Liverpool which returns £12.75 from the same stake. 

Even after a relatively poor start in the Premier League, it’s impressive that the Reds are still third favourites to win the League.

In order the top 4 favourites to win the league this season are Manchester City of course at 1/5, returning £6 from £5. Arsenal are next at 8/1, returning £45 from £5, then us at 12/1 which is a £65 return, then tied for 4th you have Spurs and Chelsea, both at 33/1, both returning £170 from the same stake. 

So that’s going to do it for this one, for those of us out there that watch the MLS, what do you guys think of Durán? Given our options up front with Diaz and Salah primarily occupying the wings and with Jota, Nunez, Firmino and Carvalho being rotated between the centre forward position and occasionally the wings, would Durán be an immediate fit? Would he get regular time or would he be one of those players we picked up and loaned back out to give him the time he needed to grow? 

Given what we’ve talked about today, I think it’s safe to say he can definitely offer something to the team and with plenty of players leaving for the world cup and LIKELY returning fatigued, a move in January could be quite a smart play. At the very least he’s a player we could pretty easily turn a profit on if things didn’t work out as planned as he is quickly becoming a target that others are turning their attention to! Until next time, take care Liverpool fans, here’s hoping our fortunes improve a bit this season! 

#Ep62 of The Empire of the Kop Podcast: Klopp to change formation for Arsenal? Nunez misfiring… and more!

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