Liverpool see free agent Bundesliga rock wanted by Arsenal as ideal successor to 184-game star, who will be sold
Liverpool are reportedly stepping up their interest in signing a highly-rated Bundesliga defender destined to leave his club this summer as a free agent.
Jurgen Klopp’s side have certainly suffered a drop-off in results this season and will likely finish the season without a trophy to their name. Having surrendered their grip on both the FA Cup and Carabao Cups they won last season, the Champions League remains their last hopes of winning some silverware.
However, they will need to overturn a 5-2 deficit inflicted by Real Madrid away at the Bernabeu to have any chance of progress. Klopp’s side, though, do have the quality and proved on Sunday in their 7-0 thrashing of Manchester United that big scorelines are not out of the question.
To that end, they will enter the latter stages of the season, as well as their second leg in the Champions League, with a degree of optimism.
Indeed, hopes will be rekindled that Liverpool can become a major force again next season.
Of course, the Reds’ squad does need some rebuilding along the way.
Klopp has made clear that he will be in the market for new midfielders with a big restructuring on the cards. And with Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain departing, they will be in the market for at least two additions.
Jude Bellingham remains their No 1 target on that front, despite his costs likely to spiral well beyond the £100m mark.
And while attention will be paid to their midfield, Klopp is also expected to strengthen his defensive options too.
READ MORE: Danny Murphy lists six players to leave Liverpool this summer to help their rebuilding plans
Liverpool huge admirers of Evan Ndicka
Among the players Murphy thinks will depart are long-serving defender Joel Matip.
Signing for the Reds on a free from Schalke in summer 2016, the defender is now in his seventh season at Anfield.
However, while a reliable performer for the Reds, injuries have severely limited his appearances on Merseyside. As a result, he has been limited to just 184 appearances over his time at the club.
Indeed, with his deal due to expire in summer 2024, Liverpool appear unlikely to offer the 31-year-old a new deal. And if a decent offer comes in for his services, then Matip may well depart Anfield this summer.
To fill the void left in their ranks, Liverpool are reportedly exploring a potential deal for Evan Ndicka.
The French defender is regarded as one of the Bundesliga’s finest centre-halves. Playing for Eintracht Frankfurt, he has made 171 appearances during four and a half years at Deutsche Bank Park.
However, his deal is due to expire this summer, making the 23-year-old eligible to leave as a free agent.
That has led to suggestions Arsenal are plotting a move for his services with Mikel Arteta reportedly on his trail.
However, Ben Jacobs confirmed to TEAMtalk last week that Liverpool were also keen on a raid.
Klopp interest in Ndicka underlined
Now Jacobs has once again suggested Liverpool are looking to pounce for the defender.
This time, speaking to Givemesport, Jacobs has revealed the reasons behind Liverpool’s interests.
And stating they see his addition as key way to upgrade a major position without too spending a penny, Jacobs insists Liverpool are big admirers of the player.
“At the opposite extreme, you’ve got a player, for example, like Evan Ndicka, who’s a free transfer,” Jacobs said.
“And that’s exactly the kind of player that Liverpool love because they know there’s value. They appreciate the talent there, so that’s one to watch as well.”
Barcelona are also reportedly on the player’s trail. That said, Fabrizio Romano is playing down claims the Spanish giants already have a deal done.
“Despite what others may have claimed, I’m told nothing has been decided yet for Evan Ndicka,” Romano said. “Barcelona are among five or six top clubs informed on his situation. But I have nothing confirmed on an agreement at this stage.
“As I’ve said previously, there’s a good chance he’ll move on a free transfer this summer. But where to has not yet been decided.”
That seemingly very much gives Liverpool a good chance of sealing a deal.
Standing a 6ft 4in, Ndicka is a strong presence in both boxes. He wins an average of 2.6 aerial duels per game and also completes 5.2 clearances every match.
An upgrade on Matip and solid competition for Ibrahima Konate to play alongside Virgil van Dijk, Liverpool are likely to strong contenders for his signature.
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