Liverpool have laid out a plan to sign Ousmane Dembele from Barcelona for a cut-price fee in a bid to get RB Leipzig to lower Timo Werner’s asking price, according to reports.
The Reds have been heavily linked with Leipzig striker Werner in recent months and it has emerged that boss Jurgen Klopp has spoken to the player, who has made no secret of his admiration for his fellow German.
However, more recent reports indicated that Liverpool are unwilling to pay the £50million release clause in his contract and have all but pulled out of negotiations.
According to 90min, however, Liverpool’s step back from negotiations is a “warning” and the Reds have also told the Bundesliga side that they will happily pursue other targets.
It is claimed that Barcelona winger Dembele is one such player on Klopp’s wish list, following the German coach’s enquiry into his availability while managing Borussia Dortmund in 2015.
Dembele moved to Dortmund in 2016 and the source says that the prospect of working with the France international is an “exciting” one for Klopp.
What’s more, Barcelona’s financial struggles mean that they would be willing to offload Dembele at a price less than half the sum of £100m they paid for him in 2017.
Barcelona would also accept an initial loan deal with a purchase option or obligation in order to free up space on the club’s wage bill, which is the highest in Europe.
Dembele made 23 appearances in his first season with Barcelona, but he was ruled out for a considerable portion of the campaign with a hamstring injury.
The 2018/19 campaign was the 24-year-old’s best season to date in Spain, with 14 goals scored and nine assists registered in 42 appearances.
However, Dembele suffered another hamstring injury which has restricted him to only nine appearances this term.
In other news, Klopp has reportedly spoken to Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly about moving to Liverpool.