Liverpool on the hunt for left-back cover with Brad Smith inching closer to Bournemouth move

Brad Smith's departure leaves Liverpool light on cover behind Alberto Moreno at left-back, although Jürgen Klopp is still thought to be actively looking for a new recruit to strengthen his options.

Liverpool on the hunt for left-back cover with Brad Smith inching closer to Bournemouth move
(Picture: Getty Images)

Liverpool are still looking for a back-up left-back option with Brad Smith poised to complete a £6 million move to Bournemouth on Tuesday.

Jürgen Klopp had already identified the left side of defence as a priority position in need of strengthening, with Ben Chilwell initially his first-choice.

But the need to bolster behind Alberto Moreno is set to become even more pressing with Smith currently en-route to the South Coast for a medical with the Cherries - and a deal for Chilwell is off the table.

Eddie Howe's men submitted a £6 million bid for 22-year-old Smith, which was accepted by the Reds over the weekend given the defender has only made 11 first-team appearances. 

Smith's Bournemouth move nearing completion

Smith's exit leaves Liverpool with few deputy options behind Moreno. (Picture: Getty Images)
Smith's exit leaves Liverpool with few deputy options behind Moreno. (Picture: Getty Images)

Smith agreed personal terms with Bournemouth whilst on their pre-season tour of the United States to allow the Aussie to board an overnight flight back to the UK to complete the formalities of his move.

Buy-back and sell-on clauses have been inserted into the deal, as they were for Jordon Ibe's £15 million move to Bournemouth earlier this month, though the latter clause is only active for two seasons.

But with Leicester City's Chilwell expected to sign a new five-year contract at the King Power Stadium, Liverpool will now have to identify new alternatives.

The England U21 international, who Liverpool had watched since last year, was the subject of a £7 million bid which was rejected last month.

But Klopp recently dropped his interest after the 19-year-old's intentions suggested he would rather stay at reigning champions Leicester.

A left-back appears to be the only addition Klopp believes his squad still require, although no deals appear on the horizon with the German waiting to find the right player whom he believes will improve the squad.

Reds shopping for left-back to compete with Moreno

Chilwell appears ready to commit his long-term future to Leicester. (Picture: Leicester City via Getty Images)
Chilwell appears ready to commit his long-term future to Leicester. (Picture: Leicester City via Getty Images)

Liverpool Under-21s currently have former Barcelona defender Juan Manuel Garcia on trial, the Spaniard starting at left-back in their recent 4-1 friendly win against Rhyl FC.

But though the club could choose to sign the former Barcelona U19s captain to a permanent deal, he will only remain an Academy player for the forseeable future.

Jetro Willems, of PSV Eindhoven, and Aston Villa's Jordan Amavi are among those who have been touted as other possibilities, although it is yet unknown if the Reds have any tangible interest in the pair.

Germany international Jonas Hector is another frequently linked, but Liverpool have not shown any interest.

Of those currently on the books, summer signing Ragnar Klavan is capable of playing at left-back in an emergency while first-choice right-back Nathaniel Clyne can switch sides if needs be.

But with little cover on the right side of defence too, bar Connor Randall, that situation seems unlikely - meaning Klopp could turn to the Academy for depth.

Jon Flanagan, who can play in either full-back role, is still weighing up whether to spend the season on loan at Burnley after Klopp allowed him to make the final decision.

The Reds boss was thought to see more regular minutes as the right step for Flanagan, who has spent the last two seasons battling injuries - but that was before Bournemouth's bid for Smith.

Meanwhile, Smith's departure will take the money Liverpool have recouped this summer to around the £50 million mark after Joe Allen officially completed his £13 million move to Stoke City on Monday.

It will mean they have sold seven senior players, following the departures of Jordon Ibe, Joao Carlos Teixeira, Sergi Canos, Martin Skrtel and Jerome Sinclair.

Mario BalotelliLazar Markovic, Luis Alberto and Andre Wisdom could all yet leave, while Crystal Palace are reportedly prepared to return with an improved £30 million offer for outcast Christian Benteke.

The Belgian striker has suggested he would be keen to stay at Anfield and fight for his first-team place, although Liverpool want to get the £32.5 million frontman off the books.

Palace have already had an opening offer worth £25 million turned down, but Alan Pardew now appears willing to met Klopp's asking price - which would mean Liverpool have earned more in sales than they have spent on signings so far.