New York Red Bulls defender Aaron Long has caught the attention of English Premier League giants Liverpool who keep an eye on the defender taking loans, multiple sources have told ESPN.
Liverpool have been besieged due to injuries in their backline, with Virgil van Dzek, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip all being sidelined. Such is the need for the Reds to force midfielder Jordan Henderson to deputation to Liverpool’s center of defense. The long-term redline will provide a short-term depth option to reduce the lack of backline options.
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Following Liverpool’s 3–1 win at Tottenham Hotspur, manager Jurgen Klopp made it clear that he would be keen to add a new central defender in this month’s transfer window.
“If you have a center-half available at a reasonable price, and the quality we need, send me a message,” he said on BT Sport.
“We thought [about making signings] And we think about the whole time but it is about doing the right thing. We need to find the right player. It is incredible what is happening in the defensive line. “
Liverpool did not officially confirm interest in the defender when contacted by ESPN for comment.
The link with the longtime USMNT comes amid growing European interest for international defenders. The Washington Post reported that Reading wanted to bring on loan on behalf of the English Championship, while MLSS Networks.com said that “England and France clubs were interested.”
A league source told ESPN on Thursday that the Red Bulls have not yet received any formal offer for Long. The transfer window in Europe closes on Monday night.
28 years long, is something of a late bloomer. He was drafted by the Portland Timbers in 2014, but was released at Middleson with loan signs at the USL Championships with the Republic of Sacramento and the Orange County Blues.
He soon debuted with the Seattle Sounders and spent 2015 playing for his reserve team. In 2016 Long trialed with the Red Bulls and was signed to his reserve team, the New York Red Bulls II, and spent the entire 2016 season in the USL.
In 2017, Long succeeded the Red Bulls first team, and has since been a mainstay, scoring 120 league, cup and playoff appearances, scoring nine goals. He was named MLS Defender of the Year in 2018, a season in which the Red Bulls claimed a Shield of Supporters, which leads the team with total regular season points.
Long’s form then caught the eye of US men’s team national team manager Gragg Berhalter, with Long scoring 18 goals for the US. Long is in training camp with the US, and is expected to have a favorable match against Trinidad and Tobago in Orlando this Sunday.