Jurgen Klopp has made it his ‘priority’ to replace a declining starter and a second source has backed up the claim Liverpool will raid Real Madrid to achieve it.
News broke on Wednesday night of Liverpool pulling out of the race to sign Jude Bellingham. Their interest remained at an all-time high, though the finances of the move forced their hand.
Indeed, the Reds realised their squad requires major surgery this summer, not just a tune-up. As such, and with Fabrizio Romano reporting as many as five signings are wanted (in three different positions), Liverpool cannot afford to blow most of their budget on any one player.
With Bellingham valued in the £125m-£135m range, a deal no longer made sense. However, speculation is beginning to grow Klopp may be able to land the player he pursued before Jude Bellingham.
Indeed, Liverpool bid for French destroyer Aurelien Tchouameni last summer. The Mirror state their offer to Monaco was worth around £75m, but the player only had eyes for Real Madrid.
Once Los Blancos lodged a suitable bid, Tchouameni didn’t hesitate in choosing a move to Spain.
However, he’s failed to establish himself as a regular starter at the Bernabeu. Toni Kroos and Luka Modric are still going strong, while Federico Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga cloud Tchouameni’s situation further.
What’s more, Real’s chances of adding Bellingham to the mix too have swelled given Liverpool are now out of the race.
A report in Spain claimed Klopp has ordered a world class signing and both he and Liverpool have settled on Tchouameni.
Now, a second report, this time from the Mirror, has added fuel to the fire.
Tchouameni to oust Liverpool regular if signed
Their reporter, David Maddock, wrote his sources suggest ‘Klopp will attempt to resurrect his interest’ in Tchouameni. If signed, he’d be viewed as the immediate replacement for the waning Fabinho.
Fabinho, 29, has endured a torrid campaign in which the rigours of so many action-packed seasons appear to have taken their toll.
The Brazilian no longer gets around the pitch as he once did and struggles to shield his centre-backs as he so expertly used to do.
Whether signing Tchouameni would result in Fabinho being sold or simply relegated to a bench role isn’t stated. But even if it’s only the latter, the writing would be on the wall long term.
Maddock added Real would only greenlight a Tchouameni sale if ‘at least’ €100m is bid. That equates to around £90m, though is still £35m-£45m less than what Bellingham would cost.
The prior Spanish report touted a slightly more modest fee, with €90m (approx. £80m) enough to seal a deal according to their understanding.