Liverpool look all set to beat Premier League rivals Manchester United and Tottenham to the £50m signing of Porto winger Luis Diaz.
Diaz has been on the radar of many top European clubs, and Tottenham Hotspur were pushing hard to complete a deal for the 25-year-old Colombia international before Monday’s deadline. Manchester United are also keen on the left-sided attacker and Ralf Rangnick had expressed a significant interest in bringing the player to Old Trafford.
Diaz’s two representatives reportedly refused to sign off the Spurs deal due to concerns over the involvement of super agent Jorge Mendes.
The PA news agency understands the Colombia international was manager Jurgen Klopp’s first choice for a summer transfer. However, growing interest from, specifically, United forced them to move early.
Liverpool are looking to push through a transfer which would see them pay an initial £37.5m. The deal will involve a maximum of £12.5m in add-ons.
That would be considerably lower than the €80m release clause reports claimed Porto would hold out for.
However, there remains a significant number of hurdles to overcome – not least that the player is currently in Argentina with his national team.
Diaz to swell Klopp’s attacking ranks
Liverpool are flying a team out to South America to expedite the deal. But a medical is already a considerable logistical issue.
But The Athletic report that the Reds look set to land the player, who will bolster an area where there is uncertainty around the future of key personnel.
Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will all be 30 this summer. And they will all be entering the final 12 months of their contracts.
Should the deal come off it would be a huge coup for Julian Ward. Ward will succeed sporting director Michael Edwards and this will be the first transfer he has taken the lead on.
Diaz has developed into a must-see forward in Portugal and has impressed against Liverpool in the Champions League.
Diaz has bagged 16 goals and six assists in the current campaign. That comes after joint-top scoring with Lionel Messi at last year’s Copa America.