Transfer Gossip: Liverpool’s £25.8m target ‘sold’ on Anfield but key issue clear with ‘waiting game’ after Lavia defeat

Liverpool have accepted defeat to Southampton over Romeo Lavia but they must ‘play the waiting game’ for the £25.8m alternative who is ‘open’ to joining.

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With Liverpool challenging Southampton to a staring contest over Romeo Lavia while their eyes are closed, the Reds are going to have to look elsewhere for a midfielder. Saints want £50m but Jurgen Klopp’s side are finding new ways of simply not offering that fee. The feeder club has become sentient.

New targets will therefore have to be identified and Fluminense midfielder Andre seems to be top of that alternative list. Melissa Reddy of Sky Sports reports that Liverpool ‘have officially made contact’ over a possible move.

Fluminense are ‘reluctant’ to sell the 22-year-old, but Andre ‘is sold on a transfer to Anfield’.

The folks over at ESPN Brazil offer us much more, saying that an opening bid of £21.5m will be made in due course for a player Liverpool are happy to go as high as £25.8m for.

They might have to, considering Fulham have already have an offer of £17.2m rejected.

But Liverpool, who have already wasted a fair bit of time restarting a midfield rebuild they thought was completed, must ‘play the waiting game’ for Fabinho’s potential replacement.

Fluminense won’t entertain a deal of any kind until after the Copa Libertadores last-16 return leg against Argentinos Juniors at the earliest; that game is on August 8 at 11pm over here, five days before the Reds kick off their Premier League season against Chelsea.

If – and only if – Fluminense are knocked out, they ‘could be open’ to selling Andre. After all the effort committed on Lavia with no reward, can Liverpool afford to risk going down an already pretty obstructed transfer path?

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West Ham remain the only Premier League club yet to make a first-team signing this summer. A planned move for Manchester City forward Carlos Borges has been hijacked and there is no sign of movement on any more targets.

Things are so bleak, in fact, that the Hammers have withdrawn their interest in James Ward-Prowse. West Ham had a £20m bid rejected for the Southampton captain but after deciding not to improve that offer, their chase is over and the Declan Rice money continues to burn a hole in David Moyes’ pocket.

There is some hope an agreement could still be struck. The Daily Record say Moyes is ‘pressing’ the Hammers to get it sorted and an offer structured around ‘sizeable performance-related bonuses’ could feasibly be accepted by Southampton.

Manchester City are having much more joy in their pursuit of Josko Gvardiol, even if they and Leipzig took a while to see eye to eye over money.

It is thought that the Premier League champions want their new defender in place before this weekend’s Community Shield final, with The Times reporting that there were ‘encouraging signs’ in talks on Tuesday that it could be done.

Even better for Manchester City, the move ‘would be below the German club’s £86 million valuation’. Harry Maguire could remain the world’s most expensive defender. Lovely.

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