Premier League • England

Klopp frustration ends as Lavia alternative says yes to Liverpool; talks accelerate over £50m-plus transfer

Cheick Doucoure of Crystal Palace is a target for Liverpool

Cheick Doucoure is a target for Liverpool

Liverpool are reportedly edging closer towards the signing of Cheick Doucoure after a trusted source revealed the Crystal Palace man is “keen” on a move to Anfield this summer.

The summer window is fast turning into a bit of a horror story for the Reds. Having lost six midfielders from their pool that finished last season, they were forced to start the 2023/24 campaign with just two new additions  – and subsequently four men down – in their engine room.

And while Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai are both excellent additions, it is clear that additional reinforcements are required. However, much to the frustration of Jurgen Klopp, efforts to sign both Moises Caicedo and Romeo Lavia both ended in disappointment.

Indeed, the failure to land Lavia certainly is a sore point at Anfield. Having seen two bids rejected by a determined Southampton, Liverpool eventually bowed to Saints’ demands and met the teenager’s asking price. But that delay in wrapping up his signing allowed Chelsea, who offered more than Liverpool, to gazump them to his signing.

That epic transfer fail in landing Lavia has been explained, with the Belgian seemingly left ‘bemused’ by Liverpool’s approach.

As a result, time is now against Liverpool this window to bring in further reinforcements. And with other clubs sensing their desperation, Liverpool could be forced to pay above and beyond the asking price of potential targets.

With that in mind, a report on Wednesday morning suggested Klopp has now drawn up a new six-man wishlist, including a £210m-rated Premier League trio.

Now, according to the Independent’s Miguel Delaney, Klopp has now identified one of those in Doucoure as his new top target.

And after two transfer failures in Lavia and Caicedo, Liverpool finally hope to make it third time lucky in their latest chase.

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Liverpool hopeful of deal to sign Cheick Doucoure

The Malian has proved a revelation at Selhurst Park since a £18m move from Lens last summer. Beating the likes of Michael Olise and Wilfried Zaha to their club’s player of the year gong shows just how good a player he has been for the Eagles.

However, his time in south-west London looks set to come to an end after just one season.

And according to Delaney, sources at Liverpool believe a deal for the 23-year-old can be struck relatively easily. Indeed, Doucoure was rated in the £70m mark when news of Liverpool’s interest first emerged earlier this summer.

However, according to information received by Delaney, Liverpool believe they can seal a deal upward of £50m, but shy of the £60m mark.

As a result, the Reds are now “stepping up their efforts” to bring the 12-times capped international to Anfield.

Furthermore, the midfielder has reportedly already said yes to a move to Merseyside, with Doucoure “keen to move to Anfield” and that personal terms “wouldn’t be an issue”.

The news will come as a major relief for Klopp, who now hopes to push through the signing at the first available opportunity.

And while it is unlikely a deal will be sealed before the weekend, there appears a belief that the defensive midfielder could be brought in in time to debut in the tasty-looking clash at Newcastle on Sunday 27 August.

While the news potentially looks like great news for Liverpool, it will come as another hammer blow for Palace. Roy Hodgson’s side have already lost Zaha on a free to Galatasaray, while Chelsea have triggered the £35m exit clause in the contract of Michael Olise.

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