Liverpool are stalling over a potential swoop for Holland sensation Matthijs De Ligt after expressing one major concern at the potential deal.
The 19-year-old defender has emerged as one of European football’s hottest properties this summer amid reports Ajax are prepared to let him leave for a fee of around €80m (£70.8m).
On Wednesday it emerged that De Ligt has five offers on the table this summer, with Manchester United, Juventus, PSG, Liverpool and Barcelona all having made approaches to sign him.
And it appears that Liverpool are leading the charge for the teenager – who underlined his credentials in Holland’s 3-1 extra-time win over England on Thursday night – with his agent Mino Raiola looking to steer him towards Anfield.
However, the Sunday Mirror claims Liverpool would risk a massive player revolt if they brought the player to Anfield. That’s because the teenager is said to be looking for wages of around £236,000 a week – more than the wages currently enjoyed by the club’s top earner, Mohamed Salah, who currently takes home £200,000 a week.
And the report claims that while Liverpool have no doubts about the player’s star qualities, nor the reported €80m asking price Ajax have set, the fact that his wages would be more than that of his international teammate Virgil van Dijk – a man widely recognised as the Premier League’s best defender – could cause quite a few issues.
The paper claims signing De Ligt and adhering to his wage demands would see a flurry of more established Reds stars seeking, at the least, pay parity, with the likes of big hitters Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino both on wages of around £175,000 a week.
De Ligt is expected to make an announcement on his future next week once Holland’s involvement in the Nations League has concluded.
It is thought that Liverpool’s failure to meet his wage demands and their subsequent procrastinating will mean the player will instead opt to sign for Barcelona, who have already sealed the signing of his club and country teammate Frenkie De Jong this summer.
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