Liverpool are attempting to push through a club-record deal for Monaco’s Thomas Lemar understood to be worth over £70 million inclusive of extras, with the France international enthusiastic over a switch to Anfield.
The 21-year-old, adept with both feet, that can operate across the frontline or as an attacking midfielder, would provide more vibrancy to Jurgen Klopp’s options with Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho unavailable.
Liverpool 18/1 to win a sixth European crown
The move is not linked to Barcelona’s pursuit of the latter, with the Merseysiders insistent their “definitive stance” will not shift before the window shuts .
Lemar, targeted by Arsenal all summer, would fortify an already explosive offensive roster for Liverpool.
Monaco have not wanted to sanction his sale following an already extensive talent drain, but Divock Origi could potentially be used as a sweetener to conclude a deal.
The Belgium striker, left out of the last two matchday squads, is desperate to secure more game time this term and has already been under consideration by the Ligue 1 champions , with Lyon and Marseille also interested.
When asked about the 22-year-old’s future, Klopp admitted that Liverpool would have to trim numbers if they did succeed with the incoming business they want to conclude.
“If players come in, I think it makes sense to think about what we do on the other side,” he said following his side’s 4-0 embarrassment of the Gunners on Sunday afternoon.
And if the Reds sign Lemar, it will be a further punch to the gut of Arsene Wenger, who stated Arsenal’s attempt to recruit him was “dead because Monaco have closed the door.”
Liverpool’s offer has dwarfed the proposals their rivals have submitted for the accomplished dribbler, who also poses a threat from set-pieces.
“We are not afraid of big numbers at the club, we are not afraid to spend,” Klopp previously told Goal about the club’s objectives in the market.
“But we have to do the right things, look at the right players and negotiate with the right clubs.”
Liverpool’s biggest issue this summer hasn’t been convincing elite talent to opt for Anfield, or the inflated valuations, but the unwillingness of clubs to negotiate with RB Leipzig and Southampton standing firm with Naby Keita and Virgil van Dijk respectively.
Liverpool have mirrored this hardline approach with Barca over Coutinho, but will hope Monaco are more receptive to a lucrative amount.
They are still optimistic of landing Keita for next season , while it remains to be seen whether they will table an offer for Van Dijk after having to publicly end interest in the centre-back following a tapping-up saga in June.
Meanwhile, Bayern Munich’s Renato Sanches is not understood to be on the agenda for the Reds.
Carlo Ancelotti has “no problem” if the 20-year-old wants to depart the Allianz Arena in order to secure more game-time, but the Portugal international has not been one of the candidates considered to enhance Klopp’s options.