In March it was reported by the Daily Mirror that Can wanted his £35,000-per-week contract, the one he signed in the summer of 2014, more than doubled.
However, the club were only prepared to pay the former Bayer Leverkusen man closer to £50,000-per-week. There’s quite a difference between the two figures being reported and it won’t be easy to bridge.
With confusion reigning, the midfielder is now a Juventus transfer target with the Serie A champions keen to bolster their midfield. However, Can has come out and revealed he won’t be moving during the winter window and this is a huge boost for The Reds after he put in a monumental shift in the 4-3 win over Manchester City.
“I haven’t signed anything with anyone. I am talking with everyone. Of course I am talking with Liverpool. Why not? I still have a contract here. It is an amazing club.
“What can I say? My agent does the rest. I just concentrate on the scene, on my performance and the football. I will give everything for this team.”
He’s made more than 100 appearances for the Merseyside club, he’s played in Europe with both Liverpool and Bayer Leverkusen and he’s been capped by Germany in a squad littered with stars.
The versatile Bayern Munich trainee has impressed for the Anfield club in a variety of roles; from centre-back under former manager Brendan Rodgers to defensive midfielder under Jürgen Klopp. He even tried his hand in a box-to-box role earlier on in the season and chipped in with a few goals.
He starred in the Europa League semi-final victory over Villarreal just days after returning from an ankle injury. He was utterly dominant and showcased just how influential he could be.
Last season he put in sterling performances against Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal. Inconsistency shouldn’t be paraded around like a badge of honour but, at the same time, being able to put in that level of performance against the best the Premier League can offer up a look into the future.
It’s a big if, but if he’s able to add consistency to his game then Klopp could have a serious player on his hands. Unfortunately for the player it’s a double-edged sword. To build consistency he need a sustained run in the first-team playing in a set position. But he’s not getting that opportunity.
When analysing his 2016/17 season a lot of context needs to be taken into account. He missed a large chunk of pre-season because of his involvement in the Euros. After returning and getting up to first-team fitness he picked up an injury against Burton Albion in the EFL Cup.
He then filled in for the Adam Lallana in a tweaked attacking role. He picked up yet another injury and upon his return was deployed in a more withdrawn role in place of the injured Jordan Henderson. He’s almost like the 12th man at times, filling in whenever a midfielder is injured despite the fact the roles vary and the responsibilities are different.
The debate surrounding Liverpool and the wages they pay, or don’t pay players, has raged on for well over a decade now. There’s an argument to suggest they skimp on players who deserve the money and ultimately miss out. Similarly, they overpay for certain players and end up being stuck with them – see Glen Johnson and José Enrique for details.
They reportedly missed out on Julian Draxler last January after refusing to meet his wage demands, that according to local press. But reports in France claim the German attacker pockets just €100,000-per-week (£86,000). The Reds weren’t willing to pay that yet in the summer the club reportedly sanctioned a £150,000-per-week offer for Mario Götze.
The report in the Mirror goes on to say ‘Klopp is an admirer of Can and believes he could develop into a top class star, but the club believe his salary should reflect his position as a promising player, not the finished article.’
First off, in what world is £80,000-per-week what clubs pay for a finished article? The report implies the club believe that sort of amount is what top players take home yet their actions in the real world contradict that.
Are any of the aforementioned three the finished article? Do any of the trio fall in the consistent category?
They may all have performed better than Can last season but new contracts aren’t rewarded off the back of one season. The German bossed it last season.
Nothing about Liverpool as a club is consistent. From their performances both on and off of the pitch to their approach to player salaries.
When 21-year-old Jordan Henderson joined the club in 2011 from Sunderland he was reportedly on £70,000-per-week, and that was before the new TV deal saw everything money related spike. After four seasons at the club he saw his salary increase to around the £100,000-per-week mark.
Danny Ings signed from Burnley in the summer of 2015 and he’s on £60,000-per-week. Gini Wijnaldum, a player who was vying for a starting role with Can last season, arrived from Newcastle two summers ago and saw his pay increase to £90,000.
Can isn’t a world beater but he’s not asking for world-class wages. Even if the club meet his demands he’s still behind the majority of the starting XI in terms of earnings. It’s a no brainer.