Liverpool’s Saul Niguez interest confirmed but Reds delaying bid due to different priority

Van Dijk nutmegs Gomez as Liverpool train in Austria

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Liverpool are keen on a summer move for Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez, but will shelve their interest in order to pursue attacking reinforcements as a matter of urgency, according to reports. Jurgen Klopp is looking to reshuffle his pack at Anfield ahead of next season in advance of a renewed Premier League title challenge.

The Reds were unable to challenge Manchester City for last season’s domestic crown, eventually claiming third place after a turbulent campaign.

A large-scale injury crisis in defence plagued Liverpool’s efforts to seal back-to-back titles, with Joel Matip, Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez all missing large parts of the season with long-term problems.

The Merseyside club have already moved to avoid a repeat of last season’s shortcomings with the signing of Ibrahima Konate in a £34million deal from RB Leipzig.

However, the Frenchman’s capture is unlikely to be the only bit of business conducted by Klopp and technical director Michael Edwards over the coming weeks and months.

Liverpool are also believed to be searching for a box-to-box midfielder to replace Georginio Wijnaldum, who left the club to join Paris Saint-Germain upon the expiry of his previous contract.

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It seems as though they have identified their man in Saul, with the Atletico man being heavily linked with a £34m move to Anfield in recent weeks.

Despite Liverpool’s desire to land the 26-year-old, they are expected to put their interest on hold in order to address a number of other pressing issues, according to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano.

It is claimed that Klopp is determined to sign a new winger and a striker before the start of the season, with the German boss reportedly set to pursue their respective additions over a move for Saul.

The latter has spent the entirety of his career to date with Atletico and is believed to be weighing up the idea of a fresh challenge.

He won his first La Liga title last season but failed to hold down a regular spot in the side under Diego Simeone, making just 22 league starts throughout the campaign.

Saul has also played 19 matches at international level for Spain, but was not included in Luis Enrique’s final squad for Euro 2020.

It remains to be seen whether Liverpool will eventually act on their interest in the midfielder ahead of the new season.

Meanwhile, former Arsenal forward Kevin Campbell recently suggested that the Saul would be the perfect replacement for Wijnaldum at Anfield next season.

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“He is a very good player,” Campbell told Football Insider earlier this month.

“I have had a close eye on him for a couple of seasons now and he is so impressive. Technically he is superb but he is also tough.

“He would slot into that Liverpool midfield like a dream. I think he would be a great replacement for Wijnaldum. I imagine he would cost a fair bit though.”

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