Liverpool are poised to announce the signing of Olympiacos defender Kostas Tsimikas for a fee which could rise to €16.5m – a player they have insisted was their first-choice target this summer.
The Reds have been negotiating a deal to sign Tsimikas for the past 10 days and TEAMtalk has gained exclusive insight into how the deal was struck.
A source familiar with the negotiations has told us that Liverpool’s initial offer for Tsimikas was rejected last month, with Liverpool Sporting Director Michael Edwards thrashing out an agreement with Olympiacos director Lina Souloukou with an announcement of the transfer now imminent.
We understand that the decisive meeting between the two clubs came while Olympiacos were in England for their Europa League clash against Wolves last Thursday. Sources close to the Greek club have informed us the final deal for the Greek international could be worth up to €16.5m if all add-ons are met.
Our contact also tells us that Olympiacos have inserted a clause in the agreement that will see them collect 20 per-cent of a sell-on fee when Tsimikas leaves Liverpool.
Souloukou has been saluted by club officials for negotiating a deal that fulfils all the requirements of her club.
We are told that Olympiacos feel some pride in moulding a player through their youth team set-up and selling him on to the reigning European and English champions. The left-back has caught the eye of Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and Edwards with his performances in European competition this season.
The move represents a rapid rise to prominence for Tsimikas, who has made a huge impression in European competition this season. Olympiacos have played Tottenham and Bayern Munich in the Champions League and played against Arsenal and Wolves in the Europa League.
Their European run finally came to an end last Thursday, as they were beaten by Wolves at Molineux, with the meeting between Souloukou and Edwards over a deal for Tsimikas taking place before that match.
Personal terms have been agreed with the player and his adviser and now all that remains is for both clubs to announce the transfer. Tsimikas is set to be unveiled as a Liverpool player once he has completed a routine medical.
Tsimikas has been assured by Liverpool chiefs that he was their top target to provide quality cover for first-choice left-back Andy Robertson, although the club has made efforts to sign Norwich defender Jamal Lewis in recent days.
When it became clear that Norwich were not willing to lower their asking price for Lewis, Liverpool moved quickly to finalise a deal with Olympiacos for Tsimikas.
The player will complete the final formalities of the deal in the next 48 hours after flying to England on Sunday.