Talks between Liverpool and Atletico Madrid over the potential signing of midfielder Saul Niguez are underway, according to journalist Ekrem Konur.
Liverpool may be on the hunt for a new midfielder this summer after Georginio Wijnaldum left to join Paris Saint-Germain at the end of a five-year spell at Anfield.
Saul made 22 starts and 11 substitute appearances for Atletico in La Liga last season as they beat Real Madrid and Barcelona to the title. However, one potential concern for the Reds may be his discipline: only seven players in the Spanish top flight picked up more yellow cards in 2020/21 than the 26-year-old (10).
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp seems to be the driving force behind the prospective move, having seen Saul score against his team in the first leg of their round of 16 defeat to Atletico in the 2019/20 Champions League.
According to Konur, it is ‘at the request of Jürgen Klopp’ that the Reds have opened talks with Diego Simeone’s side over a move for the 26-year-old.
It would be a surprise to see Liverpool pursue this deal. In all likelihood, Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and Thiago Alcantara will be the first-choice midfield trio next season, so any new signing would be slotting into a rotational role.
Saul would be pretty expensive for a squad depth option, when someone like Florian Neuhaus could be much cheaper in terms of transfer fee and wage demands.
Perhaps signing Saul would lead to the lucrative sale of another midfielder, like the injury-prone Naby Keita for instance. Otherwise, it doesn’t seem to make much sense.