Premier League • England

Liverpool in double talks over statement summer signing, with Anfield a ‘realistic’ destination for star

Arne Slot and Teun Koopmeiners, Liverpool

Arne Slot hopes to reunite with Teun Koopmeiners at Liverpool

Liverpool are in discussions with both Atalanta and the agent of Teun Koopmeiners as they try to win the race for the 26-year-old star, according to reports.

There will be significant changes at Liverpool this summer as Arne Slot prepares to succeed from Jurgen Klopp as manager. In order to help Liverpool continue challenging for major trophies under Slot, club chiefs Michael Edwards and Richard Hughes could greenlight some big deals this summer.

The Reds are hopeful of landing a new centre-back and central midfielder, while they could also bring in a new striker to help Darwin Nunez out. Liverpool have been linked with a sensational move for Rodrygo, too, but Real Madrid will not sell the Brazilian winger.

In recent weeks, Liverpool have been heavily tipped to sign Koopmeiners, the Dutch midfielder whom Slot made captain during their time together at AZ Alkmaar.

On May 10, Liverpool ‘formally registered their interest’ in Koopmeiners, who currently represents Atalanta.

And on Tuesday, Liverpool took another step closer to capturing him as it emerged that transfer rivals Juventus will not be able to afford the €60million (£51.5m) fee required to strike an agreement with Atalanta.

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According to the latest reports emerging from Italy, Liverpool have now opened talks with Koopmeiners’ agent and Atalanta to try and agree a deal.

Given Liverpool have the funds needed to match that £51.5m asking price, Anfield is now a ‘realistic’ destination for Koopmeiners.

Liverpool transfers: Talks held over Teun Koopmeiners deal

The reports do not mention how Liverpool’s first meeting with Koopmeiners’ representative went, but the appointment of Slot should help them convince the Netherlands ace to join.

While Liverpool spent big to revamp their midfield last summer – bringing in Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Ryan Gravenberch and Wataru Endo – it would still make a lot of sense for them to snare a new midfielder.

Gravenberch has had an underwhelming first season on Merseyside, while Szoboszlai’s form has dropped off in recent months. Those factors, plus Thiago Alcantara’s impending exit, justify a big Liverpool swoop for Koopmeiners.

Should Liverpool opt for a cheaper midfield addition, then they could turn to Khephren Thuram. After previously being valued at £40m, the Frenchman can reportedly leave Nice for just £13m this summer as he will soon enter the final year of his contract.

READ MORE: Five Liverpool players facing potential Anfield axe when Arne Slot moves to Merseyside