Newcastle and West Ham United are reportedly interested in signing Bayer Leverkusen defender Piero Hincapie, who has been heavily linked with Liverpool.
It’s no secret that Jurgen Klopp is keen to bring in a new centre-back in January and has identified the Ecuador international as one of his top targets.
Liverpool spent the summer rebuilding their midfield with four new names arriving to supplement a squad that saw six players depart.
In a major reshuffle, James Milner, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all departed on frees, Arthur Melo was sent back to parent club Juventus and Jordan Henderson and Fabinho sealed big-money moves to Saudi Arabia.
Arriving in their place, the Reds spent a hefty £145.2m acquiring the services of Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Wataru Endo and finally, on deadline day, Ryan Gravenberch.
With their midfield revamp done for now, Klopp is keen on strengthening his back line. It’s thought that he isn’t convinced by the likes of Joe Gomez and Joel Matip.
As previously reported by TEAMtalk, Hincapie is one of the players at the top of Liverpool’s transfer shortlist for January. The Merseyside club have already ‘opened talks’ with Leverkusen, it has been claimed.
It now seems, however, that two Premier League rivals could battle Liverpool for the signature of the 21-year-old defender.
Newcastle, West Ham to rival Liverpool for Hincapie
According to transfer journalist Ben Jacobs, Newcastle are ‘one to watch’ in the race for Hincapie.
Speaking to GiveMeSport, Jacobs said: “I would keep an eye on Hincapie as well for Newcastle.
“They didn’t seriously entertain anything over the summer and he’s contracted at Bayer Leverkusen until 2027 I believe, so there wasn’t necessarily a realistic chance of them selling last summer.
“But that’s a player that would love to play in the Premier League and if anyone puts down £35 million, he is going to push for that move to England for sure. West Ham United are the other club that have taken a little look at Hincapie.
“So Newcastle could be one to watch there, we’ll have to wait and see. But I do think there’ll be in the market for a centre back at some point in 2024, whether January or whether next summer.”
Hincapie joined Leverkusen in 2021. He has since become one of their most important players – making 79 appearances to date – and is widely considered to be one of the best young defenders in Europe.
With that in mind, it will be interesting to see if Newcastle, West Ham or Liverpool make a concrete offer for the centre-back when the transfer window re-opens in January.