Liverpool were thinking of waiting to bring in Luis Diaz but circumstances could accelerate that £60m deal. Spurs will delay their £50m move.
Tottenham, by the admission of their own manager, “are in the middle”. They are “not up, not down” but, sitting sixth in the Premier League table and chastened in the Carabao Cup, might continue to float between brilliant and bad for quite some time. What if Spurs are simply too Spurs for Antonio Conte?
The Italian head coach keeps underlining the need for investment and it will be interesting to see just how many of the promises Daniel Levy must have made to lure Conte to north London remain unbroken. One transfer target identified comes from Brighton, three places and six points below.
Tariq Lamptey has carried on from precisely where he left off before his long-term injury, rampaging down the right-hand side with some eye-catching performances. The 21-year-old is on the radar of many but Conte particularly and unsurprisingly likes the look of a player who could slot in seamlessly at wing-back.
With Matt Doherty likely to be frozen out or even loaned back to Wolves, a place could open up in that position and Lamptey seems to be priority. Brighton, according to The Sun, would want a fee similar to that which was required to prise Ben White away last summer.
That same outlet is, for obvious reasons, not to go-to place for Liverpool transfer updates. But The Sun seem strangely confident that the Reds will bring in Luis Diaz to alleviate their AFCON panic this month.
Diaz has been linked with a move to Anfield for some time but the departures of Mo Salah and Sadio Mane for a few weeks has accelerated that interest. Jurgen Klopp would ideally wait until the summer to pursue the Porto forward but AFCON absences and a Covid outbreak might force his hand.
Liverpool got a closer look at Diaz during this season’s Champions League group stage – he had three shots and key passes each in two Porto defeats – and they ‘are hoping to get him for slightly less’ than his £67m release clause. It is not actually explained how or why his current club would forgo an extra £7m. Doesn’t matter. Shut up.
But Sky Sports do shed a light on how Liverpool could afford such a deal. The perennial net spend champions will turf a few players out first.
Neco Williams could go either on loan or permanently, with the defender ‘very conscious’ of his Wales future ahead of the World Cup. He has asked Liverpool ‘to consider a move’ that will provide more playing opportunities.
There is more clarity over Nat Phillips, for whom Liverpool have rejected a £7m Premier League bid and will now field £15m Serie A offers. Divock Origi could join him over in Italy; Lazio want the striker when his contract expires at the end of the current season.
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