Liverpool beat Barcelona 4-0 at Wembley on Saturday Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Jurgen Klopp has demonstrated a real eagerness to reshape Liverpool's first-team squad during his first summer transfer window at Anfield, bringing in no fewer than six new signings to date. Exciting Senegalese forward Sadio Mane's £34m ($44.3m) switch from Southampton and the £25m arrival of attacking midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum from Newcastle are the headline additions, although the manager has also exercised his considerable Bundesliga connections over recent weeks.

Joel Matip and experienced Estonian international Ragnar Klavan have joined to bolster the defensive options, with the latter's ex-Augsburg teammate Alex Manninger, now 39, making a brief return to the Premier League 14 years after departing Arsenal for Espanyol. Younger goalkeeper Loris Karius would have been vying with the frequently disappointing Simon Mignolet for a starting berth from the off after signing from Klopp's former employers Mainz in May, but now faces at least two months on the sidelines after fracturing his right hand during a narrow defeat to Chelsea in the United States.

The departure lounge has been equally as busy, headlined by Jordon Ibe's move to Bournemouth, along with Socceroo Brad Smith, and Joe Allen being allowed to join Stoke City despite a stellar Euro 2016 campaign with Wales. Martin Skrtel leaves after eight-and-a-half years for Fenerbahce, Joao Carlos Teixeira joins FC Porto and Sergi Canos departs for Norwich City.

Kolo Toure has reunited with Brendan Rodgers at Celtic after failing to secure a new contract, while Samed Yesil and Jose Enrique have also been released. Jerome Sinclair and Jordan Rossiter have joined Watford and Rangers respectively. Mario Balotelli, Christian Benteke and Lucas are among the others expected to leave as part of a thorough overhaul.

Last season

Premier League: 8th

FA Cup: Fourth round

League Cup: Runners-up

Europa league: Runners-up

Top scorer: Daniel Sturridge (13)

Jurgen Klopp
Jurgen Klopp is entering his first full season as Liverpool manager Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Manager - Jurgen Klopp

The effortlessly charismatic and popular German was highly sought after following his decision to end a successful seven-year stint in charge of Borussia Dortmund last summer. Linked with positions at many of Europe's biggest clubs, his short sabbatical ended in October 2015 when he was appointed as Rodgers's successor.

Taking over a team that had won only four of 11 games up to that stage and was drifting aimlessly in mid-table, Klopp injected excitement and immediately got the fans onside with his charm, passion and humility. Defeats in the finals of the League Cup and Europa League meant that Liverpool's trophy drought now stands at four years and he will be expected to remedy that with his own signings in place.

Key player - Sadio Mane

Liverpool have plundered Southampton's resources with relish over recent summers, successfully enticing Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana, Nathaniel Clyne and Dejan Lovren away from St Mary's. The latest arrival from the south coast, whom Klopp claims to have tracked since the London 2012 Olympics, is an explosive, pacy and frequently unpredictable Senegalese forward likely to eventually surpass Andy Carroll as the most expensive recruit in club history.

Sadio Mane
Sadio Mane looks primed to make a big impact at Anfield GLYN KIRK/AFP/Getty Images

Previously a target for Manchester United under Louis van Gaal, Mane scored 21 goals in 67 top-flight games for the Saints after a £10m switch from Metz in September 2014. Never shy of taking on a defender, the skilful 24-year-old demonstrated his considerable talents with an excellent performance in the surprisingly emphatic 4-0 rout of Barcelona at Wembley last weekend (6 August).


Inevitably with a club of Liverpool's stature and historic reputation, supporters are desperate to see their side as title contenders again after 26 years of hurt. Memories of that late 2013/14 collapse under Rodgers are still somewhat raw, though Klopp's presence has given rise to genuine optimism that they can compete at the very top.

IBT predictions - 6th

Proceedings will certainly never be dull under Klopp, but it seems just too early in his reign to be talking about a genuine title challenge. Even a top-four finish looks unlikely given the strength of their rivals. Domestic cup competitions are likely to provide Liverpool's best chance of success once again, though a lack of European involvement could really aid their cause.