Liverpool transfer blow as City ramp up interest after Wirtz’s father speaks out

Klopp hails Salah as forward nears another Liverpool milestone

Liverpool have been handed a blow in their pursuit of Bayer Leverkusen star Florian Wirtz, with Manchester City reportedly very interested in signing the versatile playmaker as well. The Germany international is not expected to be on the move in January, though a transfer in the summer should not be ruled out.

Jurgen Klopp orchestrated a major rebuild of his midfield ranks over the summer, allowing several former stalwarts to depart and be replaced by younger players. Jordan Henderson, Fabinho and James Milner were among those to depart, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita released as free agents as well.

Liverpool then rebuilt their central ranks with the signing of Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Ryan Gravenberch and Wataru Endo – who have all seamlessly slotted into Klopp’s squad. But despite the overhaul, the ex-Borussia Dortmund is keen to add at least one new midfield signing to his ranks soon.

Leverkusen star Wirtz is among the considerations at Anfield, with the playmaker widely viewed as one of the most exciting talents in Europe. However, the Reds aren’t alone in their interest, with 90min reporting that City are equally as interested in acquiring the services of the 20-year-old.

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Wirtz is keen to remain with Leverkusen until the end of the season, though the Bundesliga outfit are desperate to retain his services until 2025 at least. But City and Liverpool ‘aren’t prepared’ to sit on their hands and wait until the end of next season and are keen to reach an agreement for his services over the summer.

Bayern Munich are also in the race to sign the versatile midfielder, though Wirtz has commented previously on how he would like to play Premier League football in his career and that could be an opportunity that he pursues sooner rather than later.

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Liverpool and City would need to persuade the player’s camp to consider a 2024 exit from the BayArena at the end of the season if they decide to table respective offers, with his father and agent, Hans-Joachim, recently telling Sky Sports Germany: “Currently, everything is geared towards Florian continuing to play in Leverkusen next season.”

Wirtz is expected to fetch a mammoth fee when he does move on and another impressive campaign in the Bundesliga could see his valuation soar even further. Thus, it is in the best interest of his suitors to strike a deal as soon as possible, or risk being priced out of signing the No 10 further down the line

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