Liverpool and AC Milan are battling it out to sign Sevilla goalkeeper Sergio Rico, according to reports in the Spanish media.
The 23-year-old Spain international has won acclaim as one of La Liga’s best stoppers in recent seasons, but his current deal contains a release clause of just €30million.
Sevilla are locked in talks with the player’s representatives in an effort to extend his deal and take his buyout clause to at least double its current fee – and their need may soon become more apparent given the interest of two of Europe’s biggest clubs.
According to Cadena Cope, both Liverpool and AC Milan have contacted Sevilla to ask for permission to speak to Rico, who has played 128 times for Sevilla since coming through their youth ranks.
Jurgen Klopp has always maintained he is not in the market for a new goalkeeper this summer, but question marks remain over the long-term suitability of both Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius, who both shared duties last season.
Klopp was linked with a move for Joe Hart earlier this year and in dismissing the speculation, he said of his goalkeeper options: “We have highest quality goalkeepers.
“Not at the moment and not in the future [will Liverpool sign a new goalkeeper].
“We have a goalkeeper [Danny Ward] playing a brilliant season at Huddersfield. There is competition here already.”
Since then, however, Liverpool have been linked with a move for veteran Spanish goalkeeper Iker Casillas, but it seems Rico could prove a good long-term option for the Reds at a price they’d be foolish not to look at.
The Report in Cadena Cope also states that Milan want to sign Rico and view him as the ‘most natural option’ should they lose Gianluigi Donnarumma this summer.
The Rossoneri are worried that their 18-year-old star is going to leave, and are also said to have made an enquiry for Rico.