Liverpool, Arsenal learn midfielder price but issues already flagged up
Reports in the French media have backed up claims that Arsenal and Liverpool are keen to sign Renato Sanches, with Lille naming their price for the midfielder.
The 23-year-old is two years into a four-year deal with the Ligue 1 champions. The Portugal international moved to Stade Pierre-Mauroy after three unconvincing seasons at Bayern Munich. He failed to command a regular first-team berth in Germany and was loaned to Swansea City in August 2017.
Sanches penned a one-year temporary deal but enjoyed only 15 outings as injury ended his time at the Liberty Stadium. The second of two hamstring problems meant he did not play for the Welsh outfit after mid-January 2018 and he returned to Portugal to recuperate.
A switch to Lille followed in the summer of 2019 but so did his injury woes. He has been plagued with muscle problems during his spell in France.
The former Benfica ace made 19 league appearances during his first campaign for Lille and 23 last term. He was part of the side under Christophe Galtier that pulled off a shock title success in 2020-21.
Sanches was linked with the Premier League duo earlier in the summer before the trail went cold. But L’Equipe (via Sport Witness) reported earlier this week that interest has resurfaced.
And the same publication on Sunday state that Lille want at least €35m for the Portuguese ace. That would not be a problem for the English clubs but there are other suitors.
Bayern Munich and Barcelona have both been mentioned in connection with the player. However, the link to the Bavarians seems unlikely given the fact they were unimpressed with his previous stint at the club.
Barca’s financial woes have been well documented. Although the sum mentioned is not a king’s ransom, it is open to debate if they have any funds available before selling.
Earlier this week, The Daily Express claimed that Catalans chief Ronald Koeman does not want the Amadora-born star on his books.
That would seem to leave the way open for the Premier League clubs to strike.
Sanches to miss out on ‘dream move’
It is said that Sanches’ is eager to join Barcelona but that appears unlikely. And any club who do take him on will be mindful of his injury woes.
L’Equipe say that he is currently out with ‘yet another muscle discomfort in a thigh’ – his fourth in 18 months. Lille president Olivier Letang is reportedly open to selling the player.
And, with Jurgen Klopp a known admirer of the schemer, Anfield may be his next destination.
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