Opinion: Tsimikas fits the bill. Now Liverpool must maintain transfer momentum.
(Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

On Monday evening, Liverpool formally announced their first signing of the summer: Greek left-back Kostas Tsimikas.

The Reds shelled out an estimated £11.75million for the Olympiacos man after failing to convince Norwich to lower their asking price for Jamal Lewis.

Profiling the highly-regarded defender

First choice or otherwise, this is a deal that ticks all the boxes for Liverpool.

Tsimikas, who turned 24 in May, is two years younger than first-choice left-back Andrew Robertson.

And crucially, there is stylistic compatibility. More so than former deputies James Milner or Joe Gomez, Tsimikas will punctuate Liverpool's attacking threat from the left flank.

Take for a representative example his performances in the Champions League group stage. Per 90 minutes, he averaged considerably more key passes, crosses anddribbles than Robertson in the same competition.

And it should be stressed that he combines this offensive enthusiasm with alert defending.

"I can say that he is a modern full-back. Really good in offense but also reliable in defense," Greek journalist Giannis Chorianopoulos told the Liverpool Echo.

Chorianopoulos is confident that Tsimikas is a more than able deputy, capable of pressuring Robertson.

Why? Because he 'will be a better under [Jurgen] Klopp and his Liverpool staff'. And because of his 'brilliant performances' at the 'highest level' against the likes of Spurs, Arsenal, Bayern Munich and, most recently, Wolves.

It is no wonder that Tsimikas was also the subject of reported interest from high-flying sides across Europe.

Leicester City and Chelsea were thought to consider him starting XI material, while Napoli allegedly got as far as agreeing a fee. Sevilla and Nice were also said to be among the suitors.

So, for a side that needs only to add strength in reserve, this is an ideal piece of business. It certainly illuminates their likely transfer strategy.

But Liverpool remain only a third of the way there. There are still vulnerabilities that have to be addressed.

What next?

They must replace Dejan Lovren with another senior centre-half. Two of their current three have a concerning injury history, and while Fabinho can cover the position, his presence further up the field is arguably too important.

And cover for their wide-players is also a must. Xherdan Shaqiri's time looks to be up - either his body is failing for him or, more likely, he has fallen completely out of favour. Divock Origi's 2019/20 season, meanwhile, was largely a struggle, and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain looks out of place in the role he was determined to leave behind.

According to multiple reports, Watford's Ismaila Sarr is among those being considered. Recruiting a player of his calibre would surely bed fears that an injury to Mohamed Salah or Sadio Mane could derail Liverpool's title ambitions.

Now or before the window closes in October, sales would likely be needed to offset the substantial outlay.

A short turnaround

Why, given the distant deadline, is this article marked by a slight sense of urgency?

Well, preparations for 2020/21 begin as early as Saturday when the squad returns to Melwood. Just a fortnight later, Liverpool raise the curtain on the new campaign by facing Arsenal in the Community Shield.

There is limited time in which to integrate new players before the campaign and the relentless schedule recommences.

Operating with their trademark nuance, reaffirmed by this Tsimikas deal, Liverpool can complete an excellent window with two more additions.

In Germany, they say Liverpool would be unbeatable - genuinely this time - if they swooped for Bayern's world-class midfielder Thiago Alcantara amid his contractual impasse.

But that deal would definitely be luxurious, especially given Naby Keita's already-proven capacity to light-up the Reds' midfield.

Instead, Liverpool could conduct themselves with frugal restraint and still reap the rewards.

Might the 'quiet' window supporters were told to anticipate get a little bit livelier in the coming days and weeks?

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