Liverpool are reportedly planning a €40 million (£34.4 million) bid for Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, with both the Spanish club and the player open to a possible move.
It’s well acknowledged that the Reds need reinforcements in the center of the park this summer after Georginio Wijnaldum’s departure. There were rumors that they would not seek to replace him but would instead promote from within, but the buzz emanating from Anfield indicates they are seeking to sign a new midfielder.
They have been connected to a variety of possible Wijnaldum successors, ranging from Youri Tielemans to Renato Sanches through Christoph Baumgartner of Hoffenheim. However, one story that seems to have gained traction lately is that of Atletico Madrid player Saul.
Liverpool’s interest was initially reported earlier this week in Spain, with La Razon saying that Liverpool were considering Saul and that Atleti were willing to speak.
However, AS has taken the tale a step further, claiming that Liverpool are now ‘preparing an offer’ for the 26-year-old in the area of €40 million.
The La Liga winners are believed to be seeking somewhat more than the reported price on the table for Saul, although the days of demanding close to €100 million for his talents are long gone. While he was instrumental in their historic championship triumph last season, his reputation has dipped after some poor performances, and he was even left out of Spain’s Euro 2016 team.
He will have a part to play under Diego Simeone if he stays. However, his playing time decreased significantly last season, and with Rodrigo De Paul’s impending transfer from Udinese, he faces a fight to retain a first-team place.
Taking all of this into account, Saul thinks it may be time to move on, and that the Premier League might be an exciting next step.
Elsewhere, Liverpool are said to be interested in Wolves’ Adama Traore, another Spain international. This is according to Football Insider, although 90 minutes reported in June that the Reds were interested in the winger.
It was thought at the time that Wolves were willing to sell him to generate money, but whether Liverpool would accept their asking price after an unsatisfactory season in which the 25-year-old battled for extended periods remains to be seen.