Premier League • England

Liverpool transfer news: Marcelo Brozovic hopes grow as Inter ask for one of two Reds stars in straight swap

Marcelo Brozovic, Inter Milan midfielder, warms up before Champions League clash against Liverpool

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been given a boost in his quest to strengthen his midfield – amid reports that Inter Milan are ready to sanction a deal for Marcelo Brozovic.

The Reds boss has brought in three new faces this summer, with club-record signing Darwin Nunez making his mark at Fulham. Stepping off the bench, he struck the Reds’ first equaliser with a smart flick, while he also teed up Mohamed Salah for their second. Liverpool have also signed Fabio Carvalho and Calvin Ramsay, two young stars expected to have a big future in the game.

But it is the present day that concerns Klopp right now. He suddenly appears to be down on his midfield options with Thiago Alcantara facing another spell on the sidelines. The Spain midfielder hobbled out of the action on Saturday during that 2-2 draw at Craven Cottage.

And with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Curtis Jones and Naby Keita also on the sidelines, Klopp now has a shortage of options.

To that end, Liverpool were on Sunday linked with a move to sign AC Milan midfielder Ismael Bennacer.

The Algerian star has been with Milan for three seasons, chalking up over 100 appearances. A Serie A title winner, he is regarded as one of Serie A’s most dominating midfielders.

However, Milan will not let him go easily. The Rossoneri have already lost Franck Kessie this summer and don’t want to lose another midfield cog. As such, they are unlikely to entertain any offers from the Reds.

Liverpool, though, will reportedly have more joy if they pursue an approach for Inter star Brozovic.

The Croatia midfielder has long had an admirer in Klopp. And his powerful displays in the Champions League clashes between the sides last season only served to reinforce the German’s desire to work with him.

Marcelo Brozovic to Liverpool hinges on potential swap

However, in the immediate aftermatch of those performances, Liverpool hopes of moving for Brozovic were curtailed when he signed a new deal at Inter.

That arrangement ties him to the Nerazzurri until summer 2026.

However, they have fresh hope a deal could be on the cards. But in doing so, they will likely have to sacrifice one of their own players to get a deal over the line.

As per Calciomercatoweb, Inter are willing to sanction Brozovic’s sale as part of a straight swap for either Roberto Firmino or Naby Keita.

Firmino has just a year remaining on his contract, but remains vital to the Liverpool cause. Indeed, Klopp has underlined his desire to keep the ‘heart and soul’ of his side in Firmino. And reports last week indicated the Brazilian will soon be offered a new deal.

It may be a very different story, however, with Keita.

Like Firmino, he is also out of contract next summer. He was a £54m signing from RB Leipzig in summer 2018. And claiming the iconic No 8 shirt at Anfield, big things were expected.

Naby Keita exit no great loss to Liverpool

But unlike the previous No 8 incumbent, Steven Gerrard, Keita has faltered badly at Anfield.

There has been flashes of his potential during his four full seasons on Merseyside.

But just 11 goals in 117 appearances, as well as a plethora of injuries, means he has flattered to deceive.

Indeed, he is a player of great frustration to supporters, and most likely the Reds coaching staff. Everyone knows what he is capable of – but how many times has that ability been on display?

But for whatever reason, Keita is a big-money Liverpool signing who has not worked out.

Naby Keita to leave Liverpool as Klopp wants him gone

Naby Keita to leave Liverpool as Klopp wants him gone

Naby Keita hasn’t lived up to his price tag and Liverpool want him gone with Barcelona and Bayern favourites to sign him this summer

And with a year left on his deal, an extension to his contract seems an unlikely course of action.

Similarly, they will neither want to lose him on a free-transfer either.

As such, a potential swap deal with Inter for Marcelo Brozovic could prove the perfect solution for all parties.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have been told they got the Sadio Mane transfer decision wrong with a pundit tripling down on his previous claims.