Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois is being linked with a return to Stamford Bridge this summer, following three seasons on loan at Spanish side Atletico Madrid.
The young Belgian international has blossomed in La Liga, and is now widely regarded as one of the best ‘keepers in Europe. But if he does head back to Jose Mourinho’s side, Atletico will have the difficult task of replacing him.
Spanish newspaper AS reports that there are two main candidates to step into Courtois’s sizeable shoes, and both have connections to Liverpool.
The first is Reds stopper Pepe Reina, still on the books at Anfield despite spending the last campaign on loan at Napoli. And the second is Levante star Keylor Navas, who has impressed with a series of outstanding displays for his current side and has been linked with a €10million move to the Premier League.
Reina is highly unlikely to return to Anfield, his future surely away from the club he served for so long, while Navas may take some persuading to head to Liverpool with Simon Mignolet currently the number one.
That said, doubts have emerged regarding the Belgian’s ability between the sticks at the highest level, and Brendan Rodgers will know he needs quality in every area of the pitch as he looks to challenge both domestically and in the Champions League next season.
So it seems that if Courtois does head back to Chelsea, Liverpool could be impacted by Atletico’s replacement – be that a player they currently have or one they reportedly want.