Liverpool rejected the chance to sign Philippe Coutinho as they have a £91.4m summer 2020 target in mind, while Man Utd have reluctantly agreed to let a defender leave on loan, according to Wednesday’s European papers.
LIVERPOOL PLOTTING €100M RAID FOR LEVERKUSEN TALENT
Liverpool rejected the chance to re-sign Philippe Coutinho this month because they are hoping to plug the playmaker gap in their side with a summer 2020 swoop for Kai Havertz, according to a report.
Coutinho this week completed a move to Bayern Munich despite making a return to Liverpool his No 1 priority, with Jurgen Klopp hinting it was a deal his side decided they could not afford him.
However, there may be a more logical explanation in that Klopp is instead looking to fill his side’s playmaker role with an alternative target – and Germany media outlet Sport1 claims the Reds are one of eight sides keen on the prolific midfielder.
Havertz stands at 6ft 1ns tall, so might not quite fit the typical No 10 stereotype, but as creative, two-footed midfielder, there’s no doubting his quality and he’s scored some absolute screamers for his side Bayer Leverkusen in the Bundesliga since his breakthrough.
Still only 20, the player netted 20 goals in 42 appearances last season and has started this season in similar fashion, netting in both of Leverkusen’s matches so far.
While Bayer are determined to keep him, it’s expected that an offer of €100m will be impossible for them to refuse next summer and it’s widely expected that this will be his last season at the BayArena.
The player is also being linked with moves to all the usual suitors with Bayern Munich, Real Madrid, Barcelona, Man City, Manchester United, Arsenal and Chelsea also mooted as suitors, but the appeal of playing for Jurgen Klopp – and Liverpool’s success in Europe last season – makes them the strongest contenders to sign him, the report concludes.
Bayer are being linked with a loan swoop for Dejan Lovren on Wednesday morning, and while Klopp would prefer to keep the Croatian after the club rejected a similar move from Roma, they could accept the Bundesliga club’s offer if only to grease the wheels for a future swoop for Havertz.
The potential £91.4m deal would shatter Liverpool’s transfer record, but with Adam Lallana and possibly James Milner set to move on by next summer, the Reds will need quality replacements – and Havertz certainly fits the bill.
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AND THE REST
Juventus have firmly entered the running to sign Neymar by lodging a big-money approach to PSG for the Brazilian (Globo Esporte / Marca)
Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane has no interest in leaving the club as part of a swap deal for Neymar (ESPN)
Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic insists he wants to stay at the Bernabeu this season, despite claims he could join AC Milan on loan – just two months after the 21-year-old Serbia international’s £62m to the LaLiga giants (AS)
RB Leipzig have entered the race for Roma striker Patrik Schick, with a loan being a possibility (Sky Italia)
Manchester United are ready to accept an approach from Fenerbahce for Marcos Rojo – but the Turkish side only want to sign the Argentina defender on loan (A Spor)
Real Betis striker Loren Moron – who scored on the opening day of the campaign – is wanted by French club Bordeau (France Football)
Bayer Leverkusen are considering a move for Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren as they seek an experienced addition to their defensive ranks (Bild)
Roma are on the verge of signing Daniele Rugani, with Juventus possibly receiving Alessio Riccardi in part exchange (Calciomercato)
Monaco have agreed a deal to sign Southampton midfielder Mario Lemina on a season-long loan deal with an option to buy (RMC Sport)
Real Betis have agreed a deal to sign Rayo Vallecano defender Alex Moreno who will now undergo a medical (Onda Cero)
Birmingham City have been linked with a move for 22-year-old Spanish left-back Alberto Redondo, who was released by Getafe at the end of last season (FootMercato)
French veteran Franck Ribery will arrive for his medicals at Fiorentina on Wednesday ahead of signing a two-year contract (Calciomercato)
AC Milan winger Samu Castillejo has decided to turn down an approach from Celta Vigo and fight for his place (Calciomercato)
Monaco are targeting Leicester striker Islam Slimani as a replacement for Radamel Falcao, who is on the verge of a move to Galatasaray – but their bid for Real Madrid’s Mariano Diaz was rejected (Gazzetta Dello Sport)