Liverpool held talks with David Alaba last year, but, according to a report, it was more of a fact-finding mission, than genuine transfer interest.
The Premier League champions are one of a handful of clubs are have been linked with the soon-to-be-out-of-contract defender.
Last month David Ornstein of The Athletic claimed Liverpool had a “strong interest” in Alaba.
Reliable transfer expert Fabrizio Romano also claimed recently that the Reds were “among the five clubs” that have contacted the player ahead of a proposed summer move.
That in part has been backed up by The Independent. Melissa Ready reports that Liverpool “did hold talks with Alaba’s camp last year”.
However, she goes on to state that the discussions were more part of an information-gathering process rather than assessing him as a target.
With Thiago in a similar position to Alaba at Bayern Munich last year the Reds approached Alaba over his salary expectations. They in turn were used “for comparative purposes” in structuring a package for Thiago.
Jurgen Klopp and co. are said to have ruled out Alaba as a central defensive target because of his height. Alaba can play in a variety of positions, but it’s at centre-back where Liverpool are in need of cover.
The report claims Liverpool “appreciate” the talented player, but say at 1.8m tall he is too small for them to consider him as a centre-back target.
Virgil Van Dijk (1.93m), Joel Matip (1.95m) and Joe Gomez (1.88m) are all considerably taller. It led Liverpool to quickly rule Alaba out.
They also landed left-back cover in Kostas Tsimikas in the summer and were committed to landing Thiago and Diogo Jotta.
Liverpool short of cover
Injuries to Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip have left Klopp short of options. And Jamie Carragher thinks Liverpool must sign a new defender this month if they want to retain the title.
“I can’t see Liverpool winning the league if they don’t buy a centre-back,” Carragher told Monday Night Football
“So we have solutions in the squad, and if we can, or if we will do something in the winter. I just don’t know.
“It is a very difficult transfer window as you can imagine. Not all of the clubs have real money.
“Doing something makes no sense. Doing the right thing makes sense. So far we have really liked what we have done.”