Premier League • England

Shock Liverpool exit for star Klopp can no longer trust takes shape, as two clubs prepare tempting offers

Liverpool stars Virgil van Dijk and Thiago Alcantara

Liverpool are braced for bids from two clubs for a senior star who Jurgen Klopp can no longer rely on, per a report.

Midfield is the area of the pitch that will generate the most headlines at Anfield this summer. Arthur Melo has returned to Juventus after the Reds opted against activating the option to buy in the Brazilian’s loan deal.

Elsewhere, James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita have left as free agents. Milner has agreed to join Brighton, while Keita has already been unveiled at Werder Bremen.

Leighton Clarkson has joined Aberdeen outright after a breakthrough campaign while loaned to the Scottish side last year. However, according to a report, Thiago Alcantara could be part of the midfield exodus too.

Online outlet Inside Futbol state Thiago, 32, is courting interest from two clubs in Saudi Arabia.

The identity of the pair isn’t revealed, though it stands to reason they come from the quartet of Al Hilal, Al Nassr, Al Ahli and Al Ittihad. Those are the four clubs who were recently taken over by the Public Investment Fund.

The burgeoning Saudi Pro League has already proved a viable escape route for many a Premier League star this summer.

What’s more, the riches on offer are also proving appealing to clubs who hope to cash in on players who they would otherwise have trouble shifting.

Indeed, Chelsea are poised to generate between €25m-€30m for Kalidou Koulibaly who’ll turn 32 on Tuesday.

The centre-back’s high salary and poor first season in England was unlikely to generate strong interest in Europe, though a move to Al Hilal is now taking shape, much to Chelsea’s relief.

Thiago has one year remaining on his Liverpool contract and has always performed to a high standard when playing.

However, his outings were in frustratingly short supply last season, with injuries beginning to blight the later years of his career.

Indeed, Thiago missed 118 days through hamstring and hip issues last term. With Alexis Mac Allister signed and two further midfield additions expected, Thiago’s time as a regular starter when fit is under a cloud anyway.

As such, Liverpool may well consider bids for Thiago if the Saudi speculation results in official bids. The chance to recoup a fee for an injury-prone 32-year-old does not come around all that often.

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