Liverpool have reportedly returned with an improved offer in their bid to sign Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, with a player thrown in to sweeten the deal.
The Reds have been chasing the Spain international since the end of last season, when it emerged when he was unhappy with life at the LaLiga champions after failing to have a major starting role in their title success. The 26-year-old made 41 appearances in all competitions, although many of them were off the bench.
Interest from Barcelona, who want to include Antoine Griezmann as part of a swap deal, has perked up Liverpool’s interest.
And now a report from Catalan publication SPORT states the Anfield outfit have submitted an improved offer of €40million plus a player in their bid to entice Atletico into a deal.
Saul’s exit is even more likely after Atletico snapped up former Leeds and Liverpool target Rodrigo De Paul recently.
Jurgen Klopp’s need for a new central midfielder is common knowledge after Gini Wijnaldum left for PSG.
James Milner is also not getting any younger, while Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Jordan Henderson all had injury issues last term.
Liverpool star being used as bait
Indeed, there’s been recent speculation that latter could be on his way out of Anfield. Henderson’s current contract runs out in 2022 and so far talks over a new one have come to nothing.
The Reds have already seen one offer knocked back for Saul. However, they will be hoping that their new bid does the trick. Especially when it includes the lure of a Reds star who had a decent Euro 2020.
Xherdan Shaqiri is currently valued at around €15million and could be of interest to Diego Simeone.
The Swiss playmaker, along with fellow attacker Divovk Origi, looks certain to move on this summer. And if Shaqiri can be used as a sweetener to seal the deal that would be the perfect scenario.