Liverpool switch 25 year-old England midfielder for Barcelona’s Gavi
Liverpool have reportedly set their sights on Leeds United midfielder Kalvin Phillips as Gavi nears a contract renewal with Barcelona, according to reports (via Sport).
However, the Reds are reportedly no longer interested in signing the 17-year-old, deciding instead to focus on a more achievable talent.
There were several outstanding performances from Gavi in the 2021-22 season for Barcelona. A key member of Xavi’s side, the midfielder impressed with his poise under pressure, remarkable dribbling ability, and sound decision-making. During the Blaugrana’s most recent season, Gavi played in 47 games across all competitions, scoring two goals and dishing out six assists.
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Jurgen Klopp was reportedly interested in signing him ahead of the 2022-23 season because of his abilities. The Blaugrana’s refusal to extend Gavi’s contract (which expires in June 2023) provided encouragement to the Reds in their pursuit. There was talk that they were willing to pay his €50 million release clause if he came to Anfield from Dortmund.
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Things have gone from bad to worse in a matter of days for the Merseyside giants. A “formal contract proposal” has already been made between Barcelona and Gavi’s agent, according to Sport, and the extension is expected to be “closed” within the next few days. Liverpool have apparently opted to let Phillips go and focus on Leeds United’s Phillips after learning of the recent events.
The contract of the Englishman, which expires in 2024, is worth at €50 million (via Transfermarkt). Leeds’ relegation would have made it easier for Liverpool to acquire the player. To secure Phillips’ services, they now have to pay a “far higher” fee.