A top Liverpool source has explained why the Reds decided against signing Gabri Veiga from Celta Vigo, with Manchester City and Chelsea also moving for other targets after initially setting their sights on him.
On June 22, it emerged that Liverpool were ‘ready to agree’ an £83,000-a-week contract with Veiga, who has shone in the Celta Vigo midfield over the past 12 months. But Liverpool soon discovered that they would face competition from Manchester City for Veiga, with Pep Guardiola eyeing up the Spaniard after missing out on Declan Rice to Arsenal.
Liverpool then made the first move in the race for Veiga by contacting super agent Jorge Mendes and tasking him with organising a deal.
However, Liverpool ended up changing their minds and went on to bring in Dominik Szoboszlai from RB Leipzig instead.
And this has forced Veiga to consider alternative transfer options. On August 13, Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport revealed the 21-year-old to be ‘one step away’ from signing for Napoli.
The reigning Serie A champions have reached an agreement with Celta Vigo worth €35million (£30m). Napoli have also finalised a five-year contract with the player himself.
During an interview with CaughtOffside, respected transfer reporter Fabrizio Romano has explained how the Veiga chase unfolded. He confirmed that Liverpool, City and Chelsea all kept tabs on the playmaker, but eventually swooped for different players.
“Gabri Veiga – the Celta Vigo midfielder is now closing in on a move to Napoli despite links with Premier League clubs earlier this summer,” Romano said.
Liverpool opt against Gabri Veiga capture
“Liverpool decided to go for different kind of midfielders, Chelsea did the same with Romeo Lavia. So it’s about skills – they all rated Veiga as top talent but didn’t bid due to different vision. Man City considered him after the Declan Rice saga but then decided to invest big money on different kind of players.”
Liverpool recently added a third new midfielder to their ranks – after Alexis Mac Allister and Szoboszlai – by signing Japan captain Wataru Endo from Stuttgart for £16.2m. Endo will help replace Fabinho and Jordan Henderson following their moves to the Saudi Pro League.
Only time will tell whether Liverpool made a mistake in not landing Veiga from Celta Vigo. There is a good chance he will thrive at Napoli alongside the likes of Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and Victor Osimhen.
Veiga will also try to help Napoli keep hold of their Italian title, as well as go further in this season’s Champions League following their quarter-final exit last term.