Premier League • England

Liverpool expert names striker Klopp will bank on after crucial Osimhen transfer update

Chelsea, Arsenal linked Napoli striker Victor Osimhen

Liverpool’s chances of signing Napoli ace Victor Osimhen have been torched, with a Reds expert instead naming a different striker who ‘is the future at Anfield’.

Eyebrows were raised when news from Italy recently claimed Liverpool had forged an agreement on personal terms with Victor Osimhen.

“The parties [Napoli and Osimhen] had reached an agreement for the renewal, but then [Osimhen’s agent Roberto] Calenda and Osimhen went back on their word,” reported Italian journalist Valter De Maggio.

“What happened? There was the inclusion of another club, from the Premier League. I’m talking about Liverpool.

“There would be frequent contacts, but I just learned something else: there would be agreements already reached.

“Let me clarify: the agreements would be between the Reds and the player, therefore they would not involve Napoli. I hope [Napoli owner Aurelio De] Laurentiis will be able to keep Victor Osimhen at least until June, but we can’t be sure.”

Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano subsequently poured cold water on the claims. Instead, Romano stressed there’s no agreement in place between Osimhen and any club – including Napoli with regards to a contract extension.

Chelsea are understood to be a genuine contender to snap up the Nigerian if Napoli give the green light to a sale. Speculation Osimhen could walk away from Naples only began to swirl following a pair of extremely tasteless social media posts on the club’s accounts earlier this season.

Napoli have since moved to appease the player and club president, Aurelio De Laurentiis, has embarked on a charm offensive in public.

But whether Osimhen will commit his long term future to the Serie A champions remains uncertain. With his current deal expiring in the summer of 2025, Napoli already have their backs against the wall.

However, according to Liverpool expert Neil Jones, Osimhen leaving Napoli with a view to joining Liverpool is mere fantasy.

Explaining why, Jones stressed Liverpool already have three viable options at centre-forward and one in particular is “the future at Anfield”.

Darwin Nunez to become Klopp’s go-to striker

“Victor Osimhen has been linked with Liverpool in recent weeks, but I would be very sceptical about this deal,” warned Jones (via Caught Offside).

“The Napoli striker is clearly a superb player, but reports that a deal has already been agreed with the Reds are wide of the mark, and I’d be surprised if he was to end up at Anfield as things stand.

“Liverpool are not in the market for a No 9. They have Darwin Nunez, Diogo Jota and Cody Gakpo to play that position at the moment, and all three of those players have the full faith of Jurgen Klopp. All are 26 or under, and seen as long-term players for the club.”

Of the three, Jones believes it’s Nunez who will eventually surge clear of Jota and Gakpo to become Liverpool’s main man at centre-forward.

“Nunez’s development, in particular, has been a big positive this season,” continued Jones. “The Uruguayan has worked hard on the training ground, and looks far more in tune with what is required from him, on and off the ball, if he is to play regularly for Liverpool.

“He took the No 9 shirt in the summer, and has now become the main striker for his country (Uruguay), and I expect him to go from strength to strength as this season goes on.

“He, for sure, is the future at Anfield, and I would not expect to see Liverpool spending big money on a centre-forward any time soon.”

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