KEY POINTS

  • Diogo Jota had an impressive debut season with Liverpool
  • Wolves may have seen Adama Traore as a player who can improve more than Jota, a journalist says
  • Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp knew he would sign the Portuguese striker years before he arrived at Anfield

Liverpool managed to sign Diogo Jota from the Wolverhampton Wanderers in the summer, but in the process, Molineux may have kept a player who potentially may be better than the Portuguese striker, a sports journalist suggests.

In his debut season with the Reds, Jota already appeared to be a value-for-money signing. Prior to his injury, the 24-year-old was on a scoring hot-streak, notching five goals in nine English Premier League appearances.

However, according to The Athletic’s Tim Spiers, who is a Wolves correspondent, the sale of Jota to Liverpool wasn’t really much of a loss to the Nuno Espirito Santo’s side. Further revealing what went down prior to the deal, Spiers bared that the Wolves may have also considered selling Adama Traore instead of Jota, but the club had a “feeling” that the former has more potential.

“In terms of personnel, the way it’s been explained to me was that they felt [Diogo] Jota had probably hit a ceiling in terms of what he could achieve at the club and that £45 million ($62 million) was a very good price to reinvest back into younger players who could be their next Jota,” Spiers wrote.

“Perhaps they could have sold Adama Traore for a similar fee, but the feeling was Traore had a higher ceiling of potential than Jota,” he continued.

City's Traore trouble: Adama Traore scored both Wolves' goals in a 2-0 win at Manchester City City's Traore trouble: Adama Traore scored both Wolves' goals in a 2-0 win at Manchester City Photo: AFP / Lindsey Parnaby

Weighing in on Jota’s departure, Wolves manager Espirito Santo earlier said he believes that Liverpool is the “right place” for his former striker.

“I am pleased that Diogo [Jota] is having an impact at Liverpool,” the Wolves boss admitted in December. “I think he is in the right place, right moment of his career. I wish him all the best, and at the same time, [I] thank him for all the good things he has done for Wolves.”

Whether or not Wolves really thought of sending Traore to Liverpool, the Reds may have not been interested as Jurgen Klopp knew years ago that Jota is a player he wants to have in his squad.

“Diogo, I liked, honestly, from the first game I saw him playing for Wolves,” Klopp told UEFA.com in December. “He had no idea about that, obviously, but for me it was always clear that when he was kind of in reach, I would go for him because he's very, very interesting and had an exciting career so far: what he did, where he's come from, the moves he made, bam bam bam.”

“I liked the discipline he showed, plus the creativity he showed, plus the desire he showed,” he continued. “And his skills are pretty good anyway, so I got a lot of good signs before we signed him that it could work out.”