Liverpool have identified RB Leipzig centre-back Dayot Upamecano as their main target as they look to sign defenders to replace the injured Virgil van Dijk. Liverpool, defending league champions, are set to be without their chief centre-back for the remainder of the season after the Dutchman damaged his knee ligaments following a horror tackle from Everton goalkeeper Jordan Pickford in the first Merseyside derby of the season. Jurgen Klopp’s side have now been left with just two fit centre-backs for the rest of the season. Manchester United Transfer News Latest Update: Sergio Romero Seeking Contract Termination After Being Left Out of Premier League 2020-21 Squad.
They are expected to make a new signing in the January transfer window and if reports are to be believed, Upamecano could be that new signing. The 21-year-old French footballer has been constantly linked with Manchester United and was reportedly a part of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s summer wish list before agreeing to a new three-year deal with Leipzig.
Van Dijk’s ill-timed injury has left Liverpool with only two fit defenders in Joe Gomez and Joel Matip. The club sold Dejan Lovren in the summer transfer window but did not sign any replacement leaving Klopp with only three recognized senior centre-backs in the team. Defensive midfielder Fabinho has often slotted in at the back to fill the void. But with Van Dijk now out for the season, Liverpool are looking to bring in a defender in January.
According to a report from Sunday World, Leipzig are expecting Liverpool to make a move for the talented centre-back in January and are ready to accept any bid over 40 million Euros. Upamecano recently signed a new contract with Leipzig and committed his future to the club until the summer of 2023. But reports have stated that the player’s representatives have also included a 42 million Euros release clause in the contract which becomes active next summer.
Liverpool, meanwhile, have also been linked to Schalke centre-back Ozan Kabak. The 20-year-old Turkish defender is available for 20 Million Pounds and could join the club as early as January. Klopp is said to be an admirer of the young defender and wanted to sign him in the summer but their plans were jeopardised due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Oct 25, 2020 10:11 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).