Former Newcastle United and Manchester City goalkeeper Shay Given thinks Liverpool are searching for replacements for maligned pair Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius, with Stoke City's Jack Butland and Atletico Madrid's Jan Oblak the outstanding candidates to fill the problem position.
Reds manager Jurgen Klopp gave Karius another chance to prove his worth in the victory over high-flying Manchester City on Sunday (14 January), but the former Mainz goalkeeper was once again criticised after failing to stop Leroy Sane's effort from beating him at his near post.
Karius has had to play second fiddle to Mignolet for much of his time at Liverpool, but Klopp is hopeful his compatriot will repay his faith and fulfill the potential he seems to think he has. Mignolet, an £11m ($15.1m) purchase from Sunderland in 2013, has been scrutinised throughout his career on Merseyside, though he has improved in the last 18 months.
Given, who enjoyed a relatively successful career with the likes of Newcastle, City and Aston Villa, thinks Liverpool are already scouring for new goalkeepers ahead of the summer and named Oblak and Butland as two players who would be a marked improvement on Karius and Mignolet, though he admits top quality stoppers beyond the aforementioned duo are in short supply.
"A club the size of Liverpool will have people looking at that department, but there's not a load [of world class goalkeepers available]," Given was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.
"I've worked with Jack Butland at Stoke, I think he is a fantastic goalkeeper who will go to a bigger club. (Jan) Oblak at Atletico Madrid has proved himself to be a top keeper; but there is not an endless list out there."
Liverpool may be flush with cash after selling Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona and recently broke the world transfer record for a defender when they signed Virgil van Dijk for £75m from Southampton, but it is not know if they are willing to match Oblak's release clause, which is believed to be £89m.
Liverpool are believed to be interested in the England international, who is also catching Chelsea's eye, but Reds supporters may not be pleased to learn of Butland's willingness to move to their bitter rivals Manchester United.
"A club like Manchester United, or whoever it may be... Manchester United are, for me, the biggest club in the world and you have to take those things in consideration. But if it's right, if it's not, I'll make those decisions at the time," Butland said last summer.