Man Utd transfer news: Ten Hag stunned as Liverpool target’s fee rockets to eye-watering new high

Erik ten Hag, Man Utd training at the Aon Training Complex, Carrington

Manchester United and Liverpool have seen their hopes of landing Brighton star Moises Caicedo on the cheap go up in smoke after the Seagulls stuck a massively prohibitive price on the Ecuadorian’s head.

The 20-year-old midfielder, signed in a bargain deal from Independiente del Valle in January 2021, has been one of the Premier League’s stand-out performers this season. And his form has not gone unnoticed with his huge displays in the centre of the field proving too much for some more of the division’s more established stars.

As such, it’s little surprise to see a number of big hitters casting admiring glances his way.

Indeed, Erik ten Hag is reportedly a huge admirer of Caicedo, having sent scouts to make regular checks on his progress. And Jurgen Klopp is also being strongly linked with a move with Liverpool’s need for new midfielders well documented.

The Merseysiders are ready to make wholesale changes to their engine room in the coming windows. Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain are set to leave as free agents. And James Milner may be nearing the end of the line with the veteran star turning 37 in January.

To that end, the Reds are likely to sign at least two midfielders in 2023. And with Jamie Carragher feeling their midfield issues were brutally exposed by Leeds on Saturday, Klopp’s midfield needs have arguably never been greater.

However, any hopes of landing Caicedo on the cheap have been quickly extinguished.

That’s after the Daily Mirror claimed Brighton have stuck a massive new fee on his head to ward off his suitors.

New huge fee on Moises Caicedo

Previously, it’s been reported that Brighton were seeking around £50m for the 20-year-old star.

However, new Seagulls manager Roberto de Zerbi feels Caicedo has the talent to become one of the world’s elite midfielders. As such, it’s now reported that they are seeking an eye-watering £85m for the South American should anyone come calling.

The Seagulls have no need to sell the player. As such, they will hope the new huge fee will be enough to dissuade his suitors.

Truth be told, the tactic from Brighton is likely to have the desired effect. While United and, particularly Liverpool, are keen, that is a fee likely beyond what either are willing to spend.

As it stands, Caicedo remains relatively inexperienced at the top level to command such a fee. To that end, the 20-year-old still only has 22 Premier League appearances to his name and 25 international caps.

It’s also not significantly lower than the fee Borussia Dortmund are reportedly seeking for Jude Bellingham. The 19-year-old is making huge waves at the Westfalenstadion this season with eight goals and two assists from 18 appearances.

And given he has Champions League experience to his name too, that is probably a fair reflection of his value.

Of course, Brighton can set whatever fee they like for a player. After all, it’s very much a sellers market these days with clubs unwilling to let top stars leave.

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