Premier League • England

Liverpool have £62m bid rejected for Brighton midfielder as Chelsea ramp up January interest

Leandro Trossard, Moises Caicedo and Danny Welbeck

Liverpool have had a £62m bid rejected for in-demand Brighton midfielder Moises Caicedo, but are preparing a second proposal for the Ecuadorian, according to reports. 

However, Chelsea have now also joined the race, with Graham Potter eyeing a reunion with his former player.

It looks like we could be set for a battle between the two Premier League rivals for the 21-year-old, so it will be interesting to see who comes out on top if, indeed, Brighton decide to sell.

According to reports coming out of Ecuador, Liverpool had a hefty £62m bid rejected for Caicedo yesterday, with Brighton demanding a fee upwards of £70m for a January transfer.

It’s no secret that Liverpool are eyeing midfield reinforcements and their number one target is Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham, but a deal may not be possible until the end of the season.

They have also earmarked Benfica’s Enzo Fernandez as another option, but he could cost a staggering £120m, while Fiorentina’s Sofyan Amrabat is also on their shortlist.

But now the Reds are reportedly busy elsewhere, with Klopp keen on bringing Brighton’s defensive midfielder to Anfield as an alternative.

Caicedo could be the ideal midfield target for the Reds

Caicedo would arguably be a better option than Fernandez and Amrabat, too, given he has already proven he can do it in the Premier League.

Since joining Brighton in 2021, Caicedo has made 27 appearances across all competitions, scoring two goals and making two assists.

A strong, aggressive defensive midfielder, the Ecuador international has quickly established himself as one of the best in Roberto De Zerbi’s side this season, starting all but two of their league games.

In fact, Caicedo has made the fourth-highest amount of tackles in the opposition’s half this season, of all players in the Premier League.

He has also made the most fouls of any player in the division, which is something to tidy up, but this tenacity would undoubtedly make him popular with the Anfield faithful.

Bringing in Caicedo would make a lot of sense for Liverpool. With Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain likely to leave as free agents at the end of their contracts, Klopp has big vacancies to fill.

It’s also been rumoured that James Milner may retire at the end of the season, as he turns 37 next week. Fabinho isn’t getting any younger either. While Harvey Elliot is an excellent prospect, some top quality cover wouldn’t go amiss.

Chelsea may hijack Liverpool deal for Caicedo

However, while Liverpool have made their interest known, Chelsea are also eyeing a big money swoop for Caicedo.

This is according to reputable journalist Ben Jacobs, who revealed that Potter wants to bring his former player to Stamford Bridge.

Last night, he said: “Moises Caicedo to Chelsea is one to watch. There is a real sense, from multiple sources, CFC may move for him.

“Graham Potter when still at Brighton joked £42m would only ‘get his boots’. #BHAFC want around £70-£75m.”

For Chelsea, buying a top quality number six like Caicedo would also be a logical move, given N’golo Kante has been linked with moves away from Stamford Bridge and Jorginho is expected to depart either this winter, or at the end of the season.

Whether Chelsea or Liverpool win the battle for the youngster’s signature, the competition is good news, in a way, for Brighton, as it will ultimately mean they receive a much higher fee if a bidding war takes place.

Losing Caicedo would be a big loss for the Seagulls, but it could also give them plenty of funds to make signings of their own this winter.

READ MORE: Klopp discusses more January signings for Liverpool after outlining four ways in which he can use Gakpo