Liverpool move closer to deal for £71m attacker also wanted by Man Utd

Champions League winners Liverpool have reportedly ‘moved up a gear’ in the race for Lille winger Nicolas Pepe.

Journalist Duncan Castles recently claimed that the Reds had “been in contact” with Pepe’s agent over a switch to Anfield, while Manchester United and Tottenham have also shown an interest in the 24-year-old.

Pepe scored 23 goals for Lille in all competitions this season and also dished out 11 assists in an outstanding campaign.

And now L’Equipe (via Sport Witness) claims that Liverpool are ‘very hot’ on the Ivory Coast forward and that a deal is ‘fast approaching’.

Lille’s valuation is understood to be around €80million (£70.8m) for Pepe and L’Equipe adds that the Reds have ‘come close’ to that figure after they ‘moved up a gear’ in the race for his signature.

Ivory Coast's forward Nicolas Pepe

That comes after the Daily Mirror claimed in mid-March that PSG were in negotiations over Pepe, but that United were also confident of competing for the player.

Read more: Liverpool are slyly emerging as favourites to sign Matthijs De Ligt – thanks in no small part to super-agent Mino Raiola and Reds defender Virgil van Dijk.


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