Jurgen Klopp can take a silver lining from Liverpool’s recent transfer blow as he looks to bolster the Reds’ midfield ranks this summer.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is reportedly set to miss out on midfield target Manuel Ugarte as Paris Saint-Germain put the finishing touches on a big-money transfer deal. However, the Reds could pounce on a one-in, one-out situation at Parc des Princes by reigniting previous interest in Renato Sanches.
With Ugarte impressing at Sporting Lisbon this season, Liverpool were among a host of Premier League sides keeping tabs on his situation. The Merseyside outfit sent scouts to watch the 22-year-old in action earlier this month, although recent developments suggest that they weren’t alone.
According to reports from Portugal and France, PSG have now agreed personal terms with Ugarte and they are set to seal the deal by triggering his £52million release clause. Klopp is believed to have plenty of other targets to fall back on, and one more may now have moved up the list.
Sanches is already finding game time difficult to come by with the Parisians, for whom he has started just five Ligue 1 matches all season.
But that doesn’t detract from long-standing interest in the Portugal international from multiple Premier League clubs. According to 90min, Liverpool are right in the mix along with Aston Villa, Newcastle United and Tottenham.
With Fabian Ruiz, Marco Verratti and Vitinha among those already scrapping it out for minutes at PSG, Ugarte’s prospective arrival would surely spell the end for Sanches, who could be available for a palatable fee this summer.
The 25-year-old was snapped up in a bargain £12.5m transfer from Lille last year, having rediscovered his best form after dreary spells with Bayern Munich and Swansea City. Sanches is bound by a long-term contract in France, but Liverpool would not have to break the bank to hand PSG a tidy profit.
Klopp and co may be under pressure to pursue good-value transfer options of that ilk if they pull the trigger on Alexis Mac Allister, with reports indicating that an eye-watering £70m deal with Brighton is on the verge of being struck.
Midfielders will be the order of the summer at Anfield with Arthur Melo, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, James Milner and Naby Keita already confirmed to be departing at the end of the season.
And while it seems as though Ugarte won’t be coming in to replace them, Sanches may edge his way up the Reds’ wish list if they catch wind of a cut-price opportunity for a player who retains significant potential