Pundit impressed with ‘cheaper’ Bellingham alternative as Liverpool consider options
Glen Johnson has been impressed with Fulham midfielder Joao Palhinha and he can see why Liverpool are considering him as a Jude Bellingham alternative.
Liverpool are expected to be busy in the summer transfer window as they are in need of a midfield overhaul.
Bellingham continues to be a primary target for Jurgen Klopp’s side, but they are also considering alternative options.
Both Liverpool and Manchester United have been linked with a move for Palhinha and Johnson can see why so many sides like him.
“Joao Palhinha has been looking great Fulham,” the former Liverpool defender told midnite.com.
“He has been a key part of Fulham’s great form at the moment. A lot of the big clubs can benefit from such a technical player and from what I have seen so far, I like him.
“We may have this wrong but there is a reason why the big clubs are looking at him.”
Fulham signed the Portuguese midfielder in the summer transfer window for around £20million and they would expect to turn a huge profit if they do sell him.
The latest reports have claimed that Fulham would look for a fee of £40-£60million, which would be considerably cheaper than what Bellingham would cost.
“Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice are obviously still favoured targets but you will be spending less than a quarter of the money for Palhinha than Rice or Bellingham,” Johnson added.
“There is obviously more hype around them because they are English and super young. He could be a cheaper option if Bellingham doesn’t come.”
Palhinha is a different profile of player to that of Bellingham, but he would add a different dynamic to this Liverpool side.
The 27-year-old has won 4.2 tackles per game in the Premier League, which is more than any player.
He also offers a goal threat as he has scored three goals this season while taking an average of 1.3 shots per game.
Marco Silva has got the best out of the Portuguese midfielder this season and he has insisted that the midfielder is happy at the club.
“He’s happy here,” Silva told reporters. “As before, it’s the same with players as managers, it’s impossible to control what people write.
“Whether managers or players are linked with clubs, or if there’s interest.
“To be honest it’s something we don’t lose time thinking about these situations. With Joao it’s the same.”
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