Paul Merson has discounted the thought that Chelsea midfielder, Mason Mount, could replace Roberto Firmino at Liverpool in the summer, as he told Soccer Saturday on Sky Sports (04/03/23 at 1:40 pm).
It is expected that Liverpool’s false nine will depart Anfield in the summer, and when it was put to Merson about Mount being his possible replacement, he added that ‘I don’t think that’s Mason’s position’.
During these past few seasons, Firmino hasn’t been able to replicate the form that previously saw the 31-year-old win the Premier League title and Champions League on Merseyside.
But that still hasn’t stopped him, during an injury-hit campaign, conjuring up an impressive seven goals from 17 Premier League games.
After Sadio Mane’s exit last summer, that once devastating front three is starting to head its separate ways, with Mo Salah expected to be the last man standing next season.
Nonetheless, Merson was asked about Firmino’s expected departure and if Mount could be the player to come in.
“I don’t think that’s Mason Mount’s position if I am being honest,” said Merson. “I think he plays in a three, the right of a three, and gets into the little pockets.
“What Bobby Firmino did is that he knitted the other two together. Mane and Salah. He knitted it. He was the one that come short. You had to go and pick him up because he was so intelligent and so bright.
“That then gave Salah and Mane the chance to be making outside-to-inside runs. And they were unplayable. The best three about. They worked harder than anybody else and had all the guile and goals in them as well.
“I think he’s hard to replace. I don’t think they have replaced him, with his injuries, I don’t think they are anywhere near the team without him. I think he is a special footballer.”
SHOULD LIVERPOOL SIGN MOUNT?
It’s interesting because, amid the influx of talent at Chelsea, one of their star players and boyhood fans is witnessing bumps in the road when it comes to his contract talks.
The £80k-a-week star (Spotrac) has a contract at Stamford Bridge until 2024, and come the summer, a decision has to be made about his future.
Liverpool could pounce on a lower-than-usual transfer fee because he will only have 12 months left and he is the type of player that would suit a Jurgen Klopp system.
He’s not a Firmino-esque player, that’s for sure, but with Thiago Alcantara proving to be an issue without the ball this season, then Mount is a better option, in that regard.