Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has spoken to Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly about the prospect of partnering Virgil van Dijk at the heart of his defence, according to a report.
Koulibaly has long been linked with a move to the Premier League, having become one of the best centre-backs in Europe and the Champions League in recent seasons.
Recent reports have suggested that Liverpool and Manchester United will go head-to-head for the Senegal international and, according to Le10 Sport, that remains the case.
However, the source adds that Liverpool have taken a step forward in their efforts to sign Koulibaly after Klopp’s teasing phone call about the prospect of moving to Anfield, a “seductive operation” that will inevitably strengthen the Reds.
What’s more, earlier reports suggested Napoli would be unwilling to budge from their close to €100million valuation of Koulibaly.
However, it is claimed that the financial impact of the global health crisis on football means the defender will now be available for between €70million and €75million.
Elsewhere, Koulibaly has received a proposal from Newcastle worth €12million a season, set to be bankrolled by the wealthy Saudi consortium trying to take the club over.
Paris Saint-Germain are also said to be keen but Koulibaly’s “clear preference” is England and the fact that the French champions want to extend Thiago Silva’s deal has reportedly put the 28-year-old off.
Liverpool would inevitably become stronger with the addition of Koulibaly, with Van Dijk leading the Reds to the Premier League’s best defensive record last season.
While Joe Gomez is Klopp’s current first choice option alongside Netherlands captain Van Dijk, however, the future of Dejan Lovren is uncertain and the Croatian has been linked with a move away.
Joel Matip looks secure, having only recently signed a new long-term contract at Anfield.
In other news, Leeds United are reportedly ready to swoop for Harry Wilson when the transfer window re-opens, with Liverpool preparing to listen to offers.