By Matt Farr
Liverpool representatives have flown to Portugal to discuss a potential £25million deal for midfield enforcer William Carvalho.
The Sporting Lisbon midfielder has been a long-term Premier League target, with both Manchester United and Arsenal having expressed an interest in the past, and Everton and Chelsea linked last summer.
However, Portuguese outlet Abola claim that Liverpool are now looking to bring Carvalho to Anfield and are “very committed” to push through the deal.
The 24-year-old has been a central figure at Estadio Jose Alvalade for a number of years now, and continues his rise to fame as one of Europe’s most highly-rated defensive-midfielders.
In the current campaign, the Euro 2016 winner has accumulated just one goal and three assists from 29 appearances, but finding the back of the net is not a necessary attribute for a defensive-minded player.
His passing, ball-winning ability and consistency are the three attributes that have most likely impressed Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, who is looking to add to his defensive options following their abject display against Swansea on Saturday.
The club’s representatives had already been in Lisbon to negotiate a deal with the club to terminate Lazar Markovic’s loan deal so that the winger could join Hull.
It looks like they’re taking advantage of the trip by trying to convince sporting director Bruno de Carvalho to part with one of Sporting Lisbon’s most-prized assets.
Football Insider verdict
Jurgen Klopp currently has a decent bunch of midfield players at his disposal, but they are not top-class. Carvalho would go a long way to improving Liverpool’s midfield, particularly in the defensive-third, and they should certainly try to get this deal done in the final week of the transfer window. £25million would be a very reasonable price for a man of his talents, and would do a fine job shielding what has been a fragile Reds defence. Lucas Leiva is no longer a long-term asset, while there have been doubts over Jordan Henderson’s ability to perform the defensive-midfield role effectively. Emre Can, meanwhile, can be another top talent, but has recently come under fire. Carvalho is arguably one of the best defensive-midfield options out there at the moment, and could go a long way to improving Liverpool’s side into genuine title contenders.
In other Liverpool transfer news, one of Jurgen Klopp’s top transfer targets has made a decision on his future – and it won’t please the German boss.