Jurgen Klopp has built his legacy at Liverpool by being extremely diligent in the transfer market, signing players who are on the verge of a major breakthrough for fees far lower than expected.
The likes of Mohamed Salah, Andy Robertson and Sadio Mane all arrived at the cusp of greatness and grew into three of the finest players in the Premier League under the leadership of the German.
Of course, these three are just a few of the players signed by Klopp who have gone on to form the best Liverpool squad in their recent history as they challenged Manchester City’s hegemony of the English game.
Signing promising players for low values while turning them into prospective superstars is not something which is new at Anfield, with Rafa Benitez enjoying success with Xabi Alonso and Fernando Torres while Brendan Rodgers even had a few hits in the transfer market.
Roberto Firmino cost the club just £21.3m in 2015 and over the course of the next eight years, he scored 111 goals for the Anfield side across 362 matches, winning practically all there was to win in the process.
The Northern Irishman even signed someone during the latter stages of his stint at Liverpool who is still a key part of the first-team squad – Joe Gomez.
How much did Joe Gomez cost Liverpool?
Following a tough 2014/15 campaign in which the Reds finished in a disappointing sixth place, Rodgers looked like he was building a squad which could challenge for trophies.
In came Firmino, Christian Benteke and Danny Ings among others, while Gomez joined from Charlton Athletic for a fee in the region of £3.5m and considering he had played just 24 senior matches, he was earmarked as a future star.
The defender was clearly excited to be joining one of the biggest teams in the country, saying: “It’s a dream come true. It’s a bit surreal and it hasn’t really hit me yet. But I’m buzzing and just excited to get started.
“The club has got great history, it’s a great club and one that I’ve always been following from when I was young.
“Here was somewhere I wanted to go and get better and learn, and play good football. It was an easy decision.”
Little did anyone think at the time he would still be playing in the first team eight years later, having won both the Champions League and Premier League during his Anfield career.
What is Joe Gomez’s market value now?
Eight years since joining, the Englishman has seen his transfer value rise and the gamble of signing a relatively unknown defender back in 2015 appears to have paid off.
According to Football Transfers, Gomez is now currently valued at €26.1m (£22.5m) which currently represents a rise of 542% from his initial £3.5m transfer fee, a staggering increase.
His highest value was achieved back in January 2021, where he was valued even higher at €33.7m (£29m) and although this has dipped recently, if he can continue to perform for Klopp and be consistent enough, this could see his value rise to this type of figure again.
Why is Joe Gomez worth so much?
His first two seasons at Anfield saw the centre-back make only ten appearances for the senior side in all competitions, and it looked as though Klopp was looking to settle him in gently, allowing the player to get a taste for action rather than throw him in at the deep end unnecessarily.
During the 2017/18 season, Gomez soon began to make his presence known, featuring in 31 games for the club as they narrowly missed out on Champions League glory, losing to Real Madrid in the final.
With Klopp finally leading the Reds to glory in Europe’s premier club competition the following season, Gomez played an integral part in the Anfield side claiming their first league title in 30 years during the 2019/20 campaign.
Across 28 matches, he ranked second in the squad for accurate passes per game (62.5) and interceptions per game (1.4), while even winning four duels per game – a success rate of 56% – showcasing his defensive abilities as the club conceded just 33 goals throughout the whole season, the lowest total in the top flight.
Klopp even hailed the defender, saying: “He is a sensational footballer, which is good.
“He has outstanding speed, which helps us a lot to keep our last line high; he is a really good challenger; good in one-on-one situations; football-wise, I said already, good.
“The package is really nice. It was always clear in the moment he starts playing and can get rhythm again, everything will be fine – and that’s how it is.”
However, what should have been a catalyst for the 26-year-old to kick on and cement his place in the starting XI soon turned into an injury-hit few seasons, missing 39 matches due to a knee problem while struggling to get back into the team upon his return.
The £85k-per-week brute forced his way back into the starting XI last term, and he certainly showcased his forward-thinking attributes.
According to FBref, when compared to positional peers across Europe, Gomez ranked in the top 7% for shot-creating actions per 90 (1.31), the best 8% for progressive passes per 90 (5.28) and the top 15% for progressive carries per 90 (1.14), demonstrating that he can also move the ball forward often in order to begin attacks from the defence.
Gomez is still only 26-years-old, and he arguably hasn’t even hit his peak years yet, which is remarkable considering it feels like the defender has been at Liverpool forever.
There is no doubt the club struck gold on him, despite some challenging times across the previous eight years. Gomez has risen to the occasion numerous times and displayed the correct attitude which has allowed him to flourish under the German.
With four years left on his current contract, it doesn’t look like he will be departing anytime soon, but if he does fall out of favour or decides to move on, the Anfield side will make a bumper profit on him in the process.