Premier League • England

Barcelona and Real Madrid prepare damaging Liverpool raids that’ll force Klopp’s hand

Harvey Elliott, Darwin Nunez and Stefan Bajcetic of Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp’s problems could soon multiply after a report revealed Barcelona and Real Madrid are mulling raids for a player Liverpool cannot afford to lose.

The Reds’ season sunk to a new low on Tuesday night when demolished 5-2 by Real Madrid at Anfield. Individual errors blighted Liverpool’s efforts and drew a stinging response from club legend Jamie Carragher post-match.

Jurgen Klopp too took a dim view of what unfolded on home turf. He branded one player “slapstick” for a moment of madness and couldn’t believe what he saw during one of Real’s goals.

With their European dream all but over for another season, attention will quickly turn to producing a miraculous late-season surge towards the Champions League places.

One player who’ll be integral to everything Liverpool do well between now and the end of the season is Stefan Bajcetic.

The 18-year-old has wasted little time displacing far more senior midfielders in Klopp’s squad since the turn of the year.

The Spaniard has started Liverpool’s last four in the league and was given the nod by Klopp against Real on Tuesday night.

AS recently reported Spain boss, Luis de la Fuente, was due to be in attendance at Anfield and Bajcetic was among those he planned to observe. A call-up to the senior Spain squad is not far off.

Barcelona, Real Madrid sizing up Bajcetic

However, according to a new report out of Spain (via Caught Offside), Bajcetic is catching admiring glances from Barcelona and Real Madrid too.

The LaLiga giants are stated to be ‘closely following’ the ex-Celta Vigo man and both sides already have a future plan in mind.

Real view him as a valuable depth piece in their midfield. The likes of Aurelien Tchouamani and Eduardo Camavinga have been drafted in in anticipation of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos’ inevitable exits.

However, a club like Real always have strength in depth and they view Bajcetic as a sound investment for their squad long-term.

Barcelona, meanwhile, have even loftier plans for Bajcetic. It’s claimed they see the teenager as an ‘ideal piece to form a future midfield with Pedri and Gavi’.

Would Liverpool sell?

Bajcetic is under contract at Anfield until 2027 having only signed his latest deal in late-January.

The piece notes Klopp would be extremely reluctant to part ways with his newest star, not least because his midfield is already the weakest area in his squad.

The Reds are known to be on the hunt for new recruits in the middle at season’s end. Jude Bellingham is the primary target, but may not be the only new arrival.

Bajcetic has already shown he’s got the tools to become a mainstay in Klopp’s midfield in the years to come. Losing him would force Liverpool into the market for an extra midfielder and owners FSG don’t readily part with their dollars.

Both the Spanish report and Caught Offside conclude a Liverpool exit is unlikely in the event Barca or Real do act on their interest.

Perhaps the only way the Reds could be cajoled into selling is if Bajcetic himself pushes for a move. He is Spanish and the idea of joining one of his homeland’s big two could appeal.

If it doesn’t, Liverpool need not fear.

READ MORE: Jamie Carragher tears into ‘shambolic’ Liverpool as pundit slams ‘nonsense’ Klopp claims after Real Madrid humbling