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Fabio Carvalho profile: Why Liverpool were desperate to sign Fulham star

After finally signing for Liverpool, Planet Sport looks at why Jurgen Klopp was so keen to sign Fulham youngster Carvalho, who is being compared to former Kop star Philippe Coutinho.

Liverpool have had some season, but they are already starting to look at the next campaign off the field after agreeing a deal with Fulham to sign talented teenager Fabio Carvalho.

Carvalho was targeted in the January transfer window, and although the deal collapsed in the waning hours of deadline day, the move was finally completed just after the end of the season.

With Carvalho's contract up this summer, Liverpool will pay Fulham an initial £5million, plus a possible extra £2.7m in add-ons for Carvalho to join Jurgen Klopp at Anfield.

So, what's all the fuss about? Planet Sport looks at why Liverpool are desperate to acquire the 19-year-old.

Carvalho's rise

Despite representing England at youth level, Carvalho was born in Portugal and started his footballing journey at Benfica in 2010 aged just seven.
His family moved to the UK in 2013, settling in Elephant and Castle and despite speaking barely a word of English he joined the youth set-up at Balham Blazers (now Balham FC).
Carvalho quickly caught the eye but despite Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool vying for his signature he opted to continue his development at Fulham.
He broke into the Under-18s squad at the age of just 15 and went on to sign a two-year scholarship deal in the summer of 2018.
On the back of a season in which he scored 11 goals and provided eight assists for the under-18s and under-23s he signed his first professional contract in May 2020.
His first senior appearance came on September 23, 2020 when he came on as a substitute in Fulham's 2-0 EFL Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday.
The attacking midfielder didn't see much more senior team action during the 2020/21 season, making only four Premier League appearances as the Cottagers were relegated.
However, he scored his first senior goal in a 3-1 away loss to Southampton in May 2021.
Relegation has proved the making of Carvalho who has been afforded more game-time by new boss Marco Silva.
In 23 Championship appearances, Carvalho has scored seven goals and registered five assists as Fulham target an immediate return to the top flight.
Although predominantly operating as a number 10, Carvalho has the ability to play on either wing.

Carvalho's style of play

Confident with the ball at his feet, he should have no problem adapting to Liverpool's fast, direct attacking style. Not only can he drop into pockets of space, dictate the tempo and pick a pass, but he isn't afraid to run at opponents and take on a shot. He averages just over two shots per game in 2021/22 and boasts 45 key passes.
Often a target for opposing midfielders, he has been hailed as the natural successor to former Kop favourite Philippe Coutinho.
A transfer with a loan-back option has been mooted, which, given Fulham's lead at the top of the Championship, will allow Liverpool to assess Carvalho at close quarters in the Premier League next season.
But what is certain is that Fulham boss Silva is in no hurry to lose the youngster just yet.
"I would like to see him here for more years," he said. "From day one I have been trying to keep him. It is not a surprise that clubs are interested in Fabio. We are talking about a young player with big talent."

READ MORE: Lewis-Potter and Brereton-Diaz head Championship XI who are Premier League-bound this summer

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