Liverpool could shock Chelsea in their pursuit of Atlanta and Ivory Coast midfielder Franck Kessie with a £35 million bid this month, claim Corriere Dello Sport. The 20-year-old has exploded onto the Serie A scene with seven goals in 17 games from a holding midfield position, and is now currently away at the African Cup of Nations.
Likened by some to Yaya Toure for his physical strength and style, he could be brought into the holding role in Jurgen Klopp’s midfield three to provide competition for Emre Can and could be a long term replacement for Lucas, even if such an expensive move seems unlikely this month.
Sky Sports claim that Liverpool are not looking to sign any central defenders this month and will not be signing wantaway Southampton captain Jose Fonte during this transfer window. With Joel Matip now fit again, Joe Gomez returning to first team action and Dejan Lovren and Ragnar Klavan impressing too, Klopp his happy with his options.
Fonte was said to be available for £10 million but at his age of 33-years-old, he does not particularly fit with the Fenway Sports Group model of looking to sign younger players.
The latest installment in the club versus country row over Joel Matip with Cameroon saw him sit out the game against Manchester United at Old Trafford yesterday as Jurgen Klopp explained that the club could not risk selecting him, saying:
“Our understanding is Joël is retired from international football and we, the club, did everything we had to do to make this clear but until now we could not get the response we need to be 100 per cent sure that he can play. It’s pretty difficult and pretty frustrating, to be honest. He’s been in training for five days and would have been in the squad, 100 per cent, maybe on the pitch today, so I don’t think it’s fair. But we cannot do more and are still waiting on the decision. We could not take the risk.”
If he is available, Matip could make a return on Wednesday when the Reds take on League 2 side Plymouth Argyle in the FA Cup third round in a replay as he seeks to rebuild his fitness.
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