Liverpool’s £34m Renato Sanches transfer pursuit still alive but Barcelona may rival Reds

Liverpool target Renato Sanches shows off skills on the pitch

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Liverpool are still alive and kicking in a two-horse race to sign Lille midfielder Renato Sanches, per reports. Barcelona are also reportedly in the running, as the Reds continue to weigh up their options regarding the replacement of Gini Wijnaldum who left for PSG earlier this summer.

It has been a surprisingly quiet window so far for Jurgen Klopp and his side, with the signing of Ibrahima Konate from RB Leipzig boxed off months ago.

Wijnaldum, a nailed-on regular under the German, also left the club after failing to agree a new contract, leaving a void which the club have failed to replace.

The fact they lost him for free puts them in a tough situation where they may need to offload before they can invest in a new midfielder.

On the Here We Go podcast, Fabrizio Romano had his say: “Working on selling players is key for Liverpool.

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“[Xherdan] Shaqiri has some interest from Lyon. They have some attacking players to leave but not their stars like [Mo] Salah and [Sadio] Mane – they’re staying of course.

“I would keep an eye on Renato Sanches for the midfield. FC Barcelona are looking at his situation.

“It’s FC Barcelona and Liverpool interested. His price tag is around £34m. For Liverpool, it’s important to sell players to sign new players.”

Sanches is a much improved player since his 2017/18 jaunt in the Premier League with Swansea City.

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Now three years older and more experienced, the Portuguese is a force in the middle of the park and his stock rose further during Euro 2020 where he battled into the starting line-up at the expense of Bruno Fernandes.

Despite having sold off plenty of their top players this summer, cash-strapped Lille would surely be willing to listen if Liverpool were able to offer the kind of money proposed by Romano.

Even better for Klopp and co. is the fact that although Barca are presented as contenders for his signature, their well-publicised financial woes suggest the opposite.

Club legend Lionel Messi was recently offloaded to PSG in emotional circumstances due to the club’s inability to afford his wages.

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Allegedly, more work is still to be done behind the scenes at the Camp Nou before new signings like Sergio Aguero and Memphis Depay can even be registered with the club.

All being said, it is hard to imagine Barca bringing in another star in the coming days, given they quite literally cannot handle what they already have on their plate.

The ball would seem to be in Liverpool’s court, therefore, as the path clears towards a much-improved 23-year-old who would fit seamlessly into Klopp’s style of play.

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