Premier League leaders Liverpool invited Jeremy Doku to Anfield – but the winger decided to stay in Belgium with Anderlecht.
Jurgen Klopp believed Anderlecht wonderkid Jeremy Doku could be the new Sadio Mane before a proposed move to Anfield fell through in 2018, the winger’s father has recalled to Het Nieuwsblad.
What do Romelu Lukaku, Youri Tielemans, Leander Dendoncker, Vincent Kompany and co all have in common? Well, they all honed their considerable talents in the Anderlecht academy before starring in a major European league and becoming an established member of the Belgian national team.
And Doku appears to have all the raw talent to follow in their esteemed footsteps.
A diminutive forward with an explosive turn of pace, the Belgium youth star has exploded onto the scene at the Jupiler League giants in recent months and it would be little surprise if Liverpool, who have taken to signing some of the continent’s most exciting teenage talents of late, make their move in the summer.
But, if the Premier League leaders had their way, Doku would already be wearing the famous red shirt.
“My preference was (for Doku to go) to Liverpool,” his father David has admitted, discussing the time when the Doku family visited Merseyside to discuss a potential move to the six-time European champions.
“Jurgen Klopp came to explain how he saw a potential successor to Sadio Mane in Jeremy. Steven Gerrard (then youth coach) showed us videos with tactical analysis. Mignolet, Mane and Wijnaldum came to talk to us at the training complex.
“Everything was already in the pipeline: a sporting project, a house, a school, a good contract.”
David adds that Chelsea, Ajax, Manchester City, Arsenal and PSV were also interested, while Liverpool offered to double the wages he was earning at the time in Belgium.
But the teen sensation opted to stay and hone his considerable talents in familiar surroundings, in the hope that staying at Anderlecht will eventually pave for a move to one of Europe’s major clubs sooner rather than later. The report adds that RSCA are confident of eventually earning more than £20 million for Doku.
GhanaSportsOnline claimed in the spring of 2018 that Doku was supposed to sign a long-term contract with Liverpool. He is also represented by Stellar Football, who also count the likes of Gareth Bale, Saul Niguez and Ben Chilwell amongst an impressive array of clients.