Had it not been for the coronavirus outbreak, there is a good chance that Timo Werner would have been the player Liverpool targeted to supplement their front line during the summer.

With the finances of such a deal not right amidst the chaos caused by the pandemic, a deal was later struck for Diogo Jota to arrive from Wolverhampton Wanderers in a package that would see them pay far less up-front for their new arrival.

The price-tags of the pair were similar, with Werner's release clause close to the top fee of £45 million that Liverpool agreed for Jota with add-ons included.

But the structure of the payment made the Portuguese forward much more appealing and viable.

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Liverpool's liking for Jota is clear in the data: the underlying numbers always showed that he could ignite with better players around him.

And at 23, he is the perfect age for that to happen - similar to the stage in his career that Sadio Mane was when he arrived from Southampton.

On the Analysing Anfield podcast, Josh Williams said: "Jota was outstanding [in the 5-0 win at Atalanta]. He scored a hat-trick and his all-round game was faultless.

"You had a front three there who are all inclined to run away from the ball rather than come towards it, which can sometimes result in structural issues because the midfield is completely separate from the forward line.

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"But Jota was through the middle, and he did the Roberto Firmino things - retreating into midfield, offering the glue and leading the press. He played it like he had played it for years."

David Hughes added: "He is so versatile. He’s played on the left but he comes into that number nine role and he just played it really well.

"He was really aggressive, his movement off the shoulder was brilliant, and he looked fantastic. He brought everything that Firmino brings but had the clinical edge that Firmino has lacked for a while.

"He is almost the profile and the player that everybody expecting Timo Werner to be - and the reason that Liverpool wanted to sign Werner.

Michael Edwards and Jurgen Klopp.jpg 

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"Jota has become that person and filled that void. It is early days and you don’t want to put too much pressure on him, but Liverpool have got a good deal."

By good fortune or otherwise, the choice to go for Jota rather than Werner is so far proving to be the right one for Liverpool and Michael Edwards.

Werner might still have been an excellent addition. But by going for a less obvious target that made the most financial sense, Liverpool uncovered another bargain.