Villarreal will be seeking a club-record fee for Nigeria winger Samuel Chukwueze after Liverpool were reported to have had a €35m offer for the winger rebuffed in the January window.
According to France Football the Premier League leaders made an offer for the player, but were rebuffed by the LaLiga outfit and it’s since been claimed that the Reds have been told it will take a fee of €65m (£60m) to poach the 20-year-old away from the right winger away from El Madrigal.
And while that would represent a club-record fee received by the Yellow Submarine, they are determined to stick by their valuation with the 13-times capped Nigeria international contracted to the club until 2023.
Even so, the Daily Express claims Jurgen Klopp and Co are considering whether to raise their bid offer in the summer with Chukwueze of particular interest to the Premier League champions-elect for his ability to cut in with his left foot from the right flank and his ability to unlock defences.
“I am aware that there are several interested teams, but I am still a Villarreal player and there is nothing concrete,” he told Marca.
Chukwueze, who has four goals and four assists this season, told Tribal Football in May, however, that playing in the Premier League remains one of his career goals.
“Playing in England is still an ambition for me,” he admitted. “I need to keep on working hard and to keep improving. I really want to play in England.
“It was very close for me to sign for Arsenal, almost had the contract in my hands. Unfortunately, it did not work out fine with my academy due to the side of agreement and payment. They did not agree with the terms of the contract.”
Chukwueze grew up hero-worshipping former Chelsea winger Arjen Robben, who he shares similar attributes with.
“He’s [Robben] the king, to me,” Chukwueze told Goal. “He’s the perfect player. I watch so many YouTube clips of him, and there are so many things I can learn from watching him.
“On the way to games, even now, I will still stick on clips of Robben and watch his goals, his dribbling. He’s my inspiration, one of the greatest.
“I like to be me, and of course you have to be yourself, but you need to learn from people like him. What a player!”