Steven Gerrard has selected Nemanja Matic as the one Manchester United player that he would take at Liverpool at this moment in time, believing that manager Jurgen Klopp possesses a real need for a high-quality destroyer capable of adding more solidity and also easing the responsibility on other midfielders.

Matic has made a hugely impressive start to life at Old Trafford since his £40m ($51.4m) transfer from Chelsea last month, producing a hugely encouraging debut performance in the Uefa Super Cup defeat to Real Madrid and enjoying a starring role in a 4-0 Premier League opening weekend demolition of West Ham United.

Klopp recently confirmed that Liverpool were still looking to strengthen their midfield options before the transfer deadline on 31 August, with the club likely to have to wait until next summer to sign chief target Naby Keita when the €50m release clause in his RB Leipzig contract becomes active.

Juventus have been persistently linked with a move for Emre Can, while Adam Lallana is currently sidelined with a thigh injury suffered during pre-season.

Philippe Coutinho, who looked set to continue in a deeper role this term following the club-record addition of Mohamed Salah and return to fitness for Sadio Mane, has a back problem and last week emailed a transfer request as he seeks to force a big-money move to Barcelona.

"I think looking at them at the weekend, Matic is a very good player," Gerrard, providing punditry for Liverpool's Champions League play-off round first-leg victory over Hoffenheim, said on BT Sport when asked which of fierce rival United's current crop he would have at Anfield.

"We haven't got a natural sitting, holding midfielder at the moment. Jordan Henderson has done a fantastic job in there, last season he obviously struggled with injury at times. We've got Emre Can as well but, for me, they are suited as well to being number eights that can get into the box.

"I think all those players - [Georginio] Wijnaldum, Henderson, Can - would all benefit from having a real big monster of a centre midfielder in there who can break up play, who can help Liverpool be a bit more secure when they pile so many numbers forward. Obviously I don't want to create any headlines and stuff, but I'm a huge fan of Matic. Looking at him at the weekend, he looks like he's the right piece of the jigsaw that Jose [Mourinho] needs."

Appearing alongside Liverpool's current Under-18s head coach, fellow Reds favourite and Merseyside native Steve McManaman answered the same question with a different answer - David De Gea.

"I like the goalkeeper," he said. "I'm not saying Liverpool necessarily need a new goalkeeper, but he's been the standout player for Manchester United over the last couple of years. He's been highly touted at Real Madrid, who are currently the best team in the world. They normally don't make many mistakes."

Steven Gerrard
Steven Gerrard made 710 appearances for Liverpool during a 17-year period Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images