Liverpool Transfer News: Latest on Simon Mignolet, Rafinha Rumours

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistMay 29, 2017

Liverpool's Belgian goalkeeper Simon Mignolet reacts during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Middlesbrough at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on May 21, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Paul ELLIS / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications.  /         (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)
PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet has admitted he always feels like he's fighting for his future at Anfield, with the Reds recently linked with a move for FC Porto man Iker Casillas.

In the past, Mignolet has been maligned for his efforts between the sticks for the Reds, although the Belgium international made noticeable progress in the second half of 2016-17.

Despite his improvement, the former Sunderland man told the Liverpool Echo (h/t Goal) he's aware there will always be speculation over his status.

"As a goalkeeper, you are on your own and even now, after a solid season, the rumours are starting again with Casillas," he said. "I'm 29 now. I know what happens when you are the Liverpool goalkeeper. Whether you have good performances, s--t performances, the scrutiny is always there. Always."

Klopp has helped Mignolet develop.
Klopp has helped Mignolet develop.PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

Liverpool had been linked with a possible move for the ex-Real Madrid No. 1, although according to James Pearce of the Liverpool Echo, the club have no interest in the veteran and no plans to strengthen their goalkeeping options.

Mignolet, to his credit, has done enough to nail down a starting spot at Anfield, as he was crucial in helping the Reds finish in the top four. Sports journalist Philip Blundell is unsure whether the 29-year-old is good enough, though:

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The signs were positive late in the campaign. Having previously looked hesitant under the high ball, Mignolet was an authoritative presence in the face of aerial bombardments from teams like Stoke City, West Bromwich Albion and Watford.

Having divided opinion throughout his Liverpool career due to his inconsistency, some supporters would love to see the Reds strengthen this facet of the team in the summer window. However, Mignolet has done enough to be starting at the base of the team at Anfield in 2017-18.


Reds Linked with Rafinha

BARCELONA, SPAIN - MARCH 08: Rafinha of Barcelona in action during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg match between FC Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain at Camp Nou on March 08, 2017 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Vladimir Rys Photography v
Vladimir Rys Photography/Getty Images

Liverpool and AS Roma are reportedly considering a move for Barcelona midfielder Rafinha this summer.

According to reports in Spain cited by Joe Rimmer of the Liverpool Echo, the Brazilian has caught the eye of the Reds and would cost around £25 million to prise away from the Camp Nou.

Rafinha emerged from the Barcelona youth system and looked set to enjoy a prosperous career in the Blaugrana first team. However, a long-term injury in the 2015-16 seasonjust as the midfielder was in the ascendency—set his progress back.

With Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Ivan Rakitic, Andre Gomes, Denis Suarez and Arda Turan also in the squad, regular game time has been tough to come by for Rafinha.

At the moment, that's exactly what he needs. After all, as we can see here, the 24-year-old has the potential to be a fantastic player:

Liverpool would be an ideal club for Rafinha to relaunch his career again, as the Barcelona man would bring something refreshing to the team's midfield. He's left-sided, dynamic and versatile, able to sit in a deeper position as well as push forward into the final third.

The Reds do have options aplenty in the middle of the park, and it would be fascinating to see how Rafinha would fit in alongside the likes of Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho. The player, despite his ties to the Camp Nou club, would surely relish the chance to work under a manager such as Jurgen Klopp too.

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