Lemar hopes fade for Liverpool as Barcelona drop new Coutinho hint

Date published: Tuesday 29th August 2017 9:22

Liverpool look to be facing a tough battle to persuade Monaco to sell midfielder Thomas Lemar, according to reports in France.

Widespread newspaper reports on both sides of the Channel on Monday suggested the Reds have earmarked the France star as a prime target before the transfer window closes on Thursday night.

French sports daily L’Equipe reported that Liverpool have prepared an offer of 72 million euros (£66.7million) for the 21-year-old attacking player.

According to French broadcaster RMC Sport, Liverpool would also consider a trade involving striker Divock Origi moving to Monaco as a sweetener for the deal.

However the same report says Monaco have ruled out selling Lemar. The seemingly impending departure of Kylian Mbappe to Paris Saint-Germain may also have a significant impact on any negotiations.

Monaco will know huge money is already coming their way, with Mbappe expected to cost around 180 million euros (£166.8million), and they may be reluctant to lose yet another star player, after a talent drain from the Stade Louis II this summer.

 

New Coutinho bid?

Liverpool, however, could still lose Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona this week, amid reports they could up their bid to a staggering £145million in a bid to finally convince them to sell.

The Reds have so far repelled repeated efforts from Barcelona to take the playmaker to the Nou Camp, having turned down a reported offer of £118million when the Catalans last bid.

Barcelona’s interest in Coutinho may not be at an end though.

Technical director Robert Fernandez said as Barcelona presented new forward Ousmane Dembele on Monday: “We hope to present another player before the end of the month.

“My intention is for one player to come or maybe two, if possible. I won’t go into names but I admit that the club is working on the possibility of signing new players.”

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