Amine Gouiri, a potential Liverpool target

Why Amine Gouiri Will Likely Be on the Liverpool Shortlist This Summer

With Michael Edwards returning to the Merseyside club as FSG’s CEO of football, data will be ever so important in recruitment once again, and that is why Amine Gouiri will likely be on the Liverpool shortlist.

Liverpool are one of the best operators in the transfer market. While many clubs go out and splash cash or target the big names, the Reds use statistical analysis to scout players to play their style. While this sometimes may pinpoint some of the sport’s top player’s, it also picks up some hidden gems.

According to reliable reports from Neil Jones and David Ornstein, the Anfield side will be in the market for central defenders, full-backs, and attackers. When it comes to scouting a forward who Liverpool will have their eyes on, there is a simple three-step method to decide who pops up. There will be no doubt that scalable output will be one of the key factors in identifying targets.

If you do not know what scalable output entails, you are simply looking for players who rank well in specific metrics. When placed on a more offensive side, their level of output will then increase without having to change how you play or how the player plays.

When it comes to Liverpool, an article by Twenty3 details exactly three key metrics the scouts will be looking out for. With Michael Edwards back at the club, it is a high possibility they will revert back to this data model:

  • An xG average of over 0.35 per 90 across two seasons
  • Under 3.5 shots per 90
  • Between 3.5 and 4.2 touches in the opposition box per 90
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It is a tried and trusted method that has seen Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mané, and Diogo Jota all have a successful time at Anfield.

Amine Gouiri: The Data

Over the last two seasons, Amine Gouiri has averaged an xG of 0.38. In 2022/23, he had a season average of 0.35 per 90, while in 2023/24, he has reached 0.4 so far.

In terms of shots per 90, he has a two-season average of 2.5. Once again, his total from 22/23 (2.18) has increased this season (2.82). To determine if a large number of chances have inflated the xG total, we are looking for both over 0.35 xG and under 3.5 shots per game.

A player with a fairly high xG and an average level of shots can get into good scoring positions. However, a player with a high xG but a high number of shots simply shows they shoot a lot; the xG could be inflated, and they would need to be placed on a team that is built around getting them the ball to sustain those figures.

Additionally, the touches in the box are extremely important. If a player is making lots of touches but very rarely shoots, it is likely one you do not want. They either are too unsure to take a chance, or they don’t get into good enough positions to take the opportunity.

The Algerian once again fits the criteria the scouts will likely be looking for. He has a two-season average of 4.07 touches in the box.

When it comes to his shots on target, the Rennes man places his shots in the corners more often than not. Out of 21 shots on target, 15 were aimed in the corner.

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While his 5 goals may seem like a low number, it is worth noting that his appearance-to-goal ratio of 4.4 games per goal is better than Diogo Jota’s 4.8 in his last season at Wolves.

Amine Gouiri Shot Map 1

From the above data, it is clear that Gouiri certainly has the potential to improve. The North African footballer, given higher-quality goal-scoring opportunities, could turn out to be a shrewd signing by Liverpool, if they move for him.

Will the Reds Make a Move for Gouiri?

Of course, we simply do not know if Liverpool will make a move for the Rennes man. There is always the possibility that the club steps away from this statistical model when attempting to reinforce their numbers next season.

The dynamic attacker, who can play anywhere across the front line, was previously on a transfer shortlist for 2022/23 that included the likes of Jarrod Bowen, Marcus Thuram, Noa Lang, Christopher Nkunku, Cody Gakpo, and Kamaldeen Sulemana, according to the Athletic.

With the Reds already being familiar and the Rennes man still being just 24-years-old, it would not be a shock if they made their move this summer.

He fits the age profile, he can play across the front three, and he passes all of the previous statistical data that has pinpointed successful attackers such as Salah, Mané, and Jota. And with Rennes sitting 8th in Ligue 1, you would suspect they would not demand an extortionate fee.

We likely have to wait until the title-chasers finalise a new manager before any business starts to be done ahead of 2024/2025.

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Right now, Liverpool will simply be focusing on a mammoth Premier League title race after a very tactically astute performance against Manchester City.

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