Premier League • England

Liverpool transfer crumbles, with huge Klopp gamble required if midfielder is to sign

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp

The chances of Liverpool signing Brazil international Andre have plummeted, and only a huge gamble will result in a transfer to Anfield this window, per reports.

The Reds remain on the hunt for one and more probably two extra midfielders this month. The holding midfield position is bare at present, with Fabinho’s switch to Al Ittihad leaving Jurgen Klopp desperately short.

Alexis Mac Allister was deployed in the holding role in Liverpool’s final pre-season friendly against Darmstadt. However, while the Argentine performed well, it’s not the position either he or Klopp envisioned when paying Brighton £35m.

Southampton’s Romeo Lavia remains front and centre in Liverpool’s sights. The Belgium international, 19, was being courted even before Fabinho’s move to Saudi Arabia took shape.

Liverpool have seen three separate bids knocked back by the Saints. The latest totalled £45m, with Southampton showing no signs of lowering their £50m price tag.

Another midfield option Liverpool have explored is Fluminense ace, Andre.

The Brazil international, 22, has been linked with Liverpool by numerous outlets including Sky Sports and ESPN Brazil. Sky claimed Andre is ‘sold on a transfer to Anfield’.

The Reds were reportedly formulating a £21.5m proposal and would even be willing to go as high as £25.8m. However, a deal is far from straightforward given the stance Fluminense have reportedly taken.

Indeed, ESPN Brazil stressed Fluminense will be reluctant in the extreme to sell Andre while still involved in the Copa Libertadores.

That is the South American equivalent of the Champions League, and Fluminense progressed to the quarter final stage thanks to a 2-0 second leg victory (3-1 on aggregate) over Argentinos Juniors on Tuesday night.

As such, and if ESPN Brazil are correct, an almost insurmountable hurdle has been placed in Liverpool’s way.

Huge gamble required to spring Andre transfer

Their only hope would appear to rest with Fluminense bowing out of the Copa Libertadores in the quarter-finals.

Fluminense will face either Flamengo or Club Olimpia at that stage, though the return leg won’t take place until either August 29, 30 or 31.

The British summer transfer window slams shut at 11pm on Friday September 1. As such, Liverpool would be racing against the clock to wrap up a move if still pursuing Andre at that time.

What’s more, there’s no guarantee Fluminense lose their quarter-final clash anyway.

All in all, it may be wise for Liverpool to pursue another target if they’re determined to sign two more midfielders this window.

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