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Face It, Liverpool Fans: Dejan Lovren Is Never Going Away

Dejan Lovren is like a haunted doll. No matter how hard you try to get rid of him, he always finds a way to stay put. During Liverpool's last two summers, a main goal has been to replace Lovren in the starting lineup. Lovren is still in the starting lineup. Next summer they will try to replace him again, but will fail somehow. Dejan Lovren will keep his job. You have my word on that. Dejan Lovren is forever.

This offseason, one of Liverpool's main goals was to improve at center back. They came into the transfer window with six senior center backs: Lovren, Joel Matip, Ragnar Klavan, Joe Gomez, Mamadou Sakho and Lucas Leiva. They sold Sakho to Crystal Palace and Lucas to Lazio. They struck out with Virgil van Dijk and did not seriously pursue anyone else. Lovren's grip on his starting spot remains unloosened.

The offseason before, improving at center back was also a priority. Lovren and Mamadou Sakho had formed Liverpool's first-choice defensive partnership, but it was clear to everyone Lovren was a weak point that would have to be addressed. Liverpool did their business early, signing Joel Matip to a pre-contract in January and hoping (in the fans' minds) to pair him with Mamadou Sakho.

What actually happened: they sold Martin Skrtel, released Kolo Toure and Mamadou Sakho pissed off Jurgen Klopp so bad he never played for Liverpool again. They also signed Ragnar Klavan as a nominal backup.

(The offseason before that, they didn't do any business with first team center backs because Martin Skrtel was still playing well and everyone thought Lovren just needed some time.)

Prediction: next summer Liverpool *almost* sign a new center back only to find out during the medical that the new boy has, like, gout or something and call it off. It is written in the stars. You know what, let's just run through all the transfer windows until Lovren gets his testimonial, huh?


2014: Lovren signed

2015: everything will probably be fine, he just needs more time

2016: Mamadou Sakho irreversibly damages his relationship with Jurgen Klopp

2017: Southampton refuse to sell Virgil van Dijk

2018: something bad is revealed during the medical

2019: Liverpool bungle their way into a transfer ban, are forced to keep Lovren

2020: new signing pulls a Ross Barkley, jumps ship during the medical

2021: new signing's original club submits the paperwork 45 seconds late, FA won't budge

2022: new signing is ruled ineligible by some convoluted UEFA bylaw involving Brexit

2023: new signing finally arrives, tears ACL in first match, Lovren forced back into starting role

2024: Dejan Lovren testimonial, gets offered coaching role, stays at Liverpool in various roles until the sun incinerates the earth

So it is written, so it shall be.

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