Liverpool are reported to be exploring the possibility of another January raid on Red Bull Salzburg – this time for an impressive central defender.
Twelve months ago, Liverpool made their only serious splash of the winter window by bringing in Takumi Minamino from the Austrian side.
This time around, Jurgen Klopp is supposedly casting admiring glances towards his former teammate Maximilian Wober.
The 22-year-old is the Austrian Bundesliga’s most expensive-ever signing. That’s after Salzburg paid £11m to Sevilla in summer 2019 to bring him back to his homeland.
Wober is contracted to Salzburg until summer 2024. That, however, is unlikely to deter Liverpool with the Austrian side showing they are willing to offload some of their top talents.
Erling Haaland and the aforementioned Minamino have all been prized away for relatively modest fees in recent times.
But it seems their departures won’t end there. The Austrian champions have already sold Dominik Szoboszlai this month.
And he seemingly won’t be the last with Wober also commanding attention.
Links to Wober have emerged via Eurosport, who state Klopp very much likes the defender. As per the article, they say Wober will ‘come under consideration’ should Liverpool decide to sign a defender this month.
Lille’s Sven Botman and Braga’s David Carmo are also suggested as potential targets. Liverpool, it seems, are only looking to spend a modest fee on a new defender. That means the likes of Dayot Upamecano – rated in the €50m bracket – are unlikely to be targeted.
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Klopp sits on fence over January targets
Klopp, meanwhile, has played down the likelihood he will utilise the January transfer window to ease his problems in central defence – but did drop the smallest hint he could look to spend.
However, Klopp’s assertion “not all clubs have real money” and “doing ‘something’ makes no sense” suggests the Reds boss is happy to continue with the options he has at his disposal. That is, unless, a gilt-edged opportunity arises.
Former Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher said it was “paramount” they signed a centre-back this month.
Klopp, however, is reluctant to spend just for the sake of it.
“We have solutions in the squad obviously but we struggled still with injuries,” said Klopp.
“For most of the time with centre-half position. It can happen like this when it starts and does not stop.
“So we have solutions in the squad, and if we can, or if we will do something in the winter, I just don’t know.
“It is a very difficult transfer window as you can imagine. Not all of the clubs have real money.
“Doing something makes no sense. Doing the right thing makes sense. So far we have really liked what we have done.
“I liked Nat (in Wednesday’s goalless draw at Newcastle).
“He is a clever boy and knows about his ability and is using it and doing the job and helped us a lot.
“We have three centre-halves and if Rhys had played Nat would not have played for five or six weeks. He needed to get this out of his system.”
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