Premier League • England

Bids to fly in for superb Liverpool star after £20m asking price set; two other Reds exits announced

Liverpool centre-back Sepp van den Berg, Mainz loan

Liverpool have placed a £20m valuation on a star Jurgen Klopp rarely used and transfer interest – including from two Premier League sides – is widespread, while the club have also confirmed two other departures.

The centre-back corps at Liverpool has been relatively settled for a number of years. Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez had been constants since 2018. Dejan Lovren was eventually replaced by Ibrahima Konate, while Nat Phillips has provided cover during times of injury crisis.

Jarell Quansah has refreshed the ranks over the last 12 months after enjoying a breakthrough season. His opportunity came at the expense of Sepp van den Berg who is yet to make his mark at Anfield.

Liverpool signed the Dutchman, now 22, from PEC Zwolle in a £4.4m deal all the way back in 2019.

However, Van den Berg has more years on Liverpool’s books than appearances, with the Dutchman limited to just four outings in five years.

The bulk of Van den Berg’s time with Liverpool has been spent out on loan. The centre-back’s latest spell away came with German club Mainz where Van den Berg took giant strides forward in his development.

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Van den Berg’s many suitors named; £20m price set

Van den Berg was among the Bundesliga’s best centre-halves in various key metrics. Mainz hope to re-sign the player and prior reports from Sky Germany stated Van den Berg has informed Liverpool he wants out.

However, Mainz look certain to be priced out of a move given the Reds have placed a £20m valuation on the player.

That’s according to the Athletic who also reveal the identities of plenty more clubs seeking to sign the Liverpool man this window.

From within the Premier League, Brentford and newly-promoted Southampton are both in the mix.

From further afield, German club Wolfsburg and Dutch giant Ajax – long-term admirers of Van den Berg – are both credited with interest.

A separate report from the Netherlands has also put PSV Eindhoven in the frame, though a move there would require Liverpool to compromise on their asking price.

Pre-season crucial in determining Van den Berg fate

Liverpool expect to receive bids for Van den Berg, though won’t rush into a hasty decision on whether to keep or sell.

New manager Arne Slot wishes to see Van den Berg in action before making a final call on a transfer.

Van den Berg is in line to feature heavily for Liverpool during pre-season given their various absences in the centre-back position. Indeed, Van Dijk (Netherlands), Gomez (England) and Konate (France) are all still on international duty with their countries at Euro 2024.

Furthermore, Joel Matip left Liverpool as a free agent on June 30. The report notes Van den Berg could avert the need for Liverpool to sign a replacement by filling that void himself.

Of course, that is first reliant on the player impressing in pre-season and proving he’s ready for the Liverpool first-team.

If he fails that audition, Liverpool will give the green light to a sale if bids in the £20m region are received.

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Liverpool confirm double exit

Elsewhere, Liverpool have announced the permanent exits of two players.

Centre-back Anderson Arroyo – who never actually debuted for Liverpool despite arriving in 2018 – has joined Burgos in a free transfer.

Arroyo, now 24, spent the second half of last season loaned to the Spanish second tier side and has now joined the club outright.

A higher profile exit in the form of back-up goalkeeper Adrian has also materialised. Liverpool did offer the 37-year-old a new deal, though Adrian has elected to leave ahead of completing an anticipated free agent switch to boyhood club Real Betis.

Taking to X, Liverpool stated: “Adrian departs Liverpool this summer having made a valuable contribution to the club’s successes across his five years at Anfield.

“A popular figure among teammates and staff alike, Adrian leaves the Reds with the best wishes of everybody at the club. Thank you for everything, Adrian.”

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