As the Liverpool squad head out to Hong Kong to continue pre-season, we round up the latest transfer news and rumours from Merseyside.
Earlier last week, it was revealed that Liverpool had seen their opening £57 million bid for RB Leipzig midfielder Naby Keita rejected. While Leipzig manager Ralph Hasenhuttl and sporting director Ralf Rangnick are adamant the player won’t be sold, their stance is undermined by the club’s hierarchy.
Leipzig are said to be of the opinion that a €75 million (£65.7 million) offer would be ‘ridiculous’ to turn down. However, Leipzig head coach Ralph Hasenhuttl insists the Keita is happy and will not be leaving.
“You can see that they feel great here and are looking forward to the new season,” Hasenhuttl told Kicker magazine. “They know very well what they have here.
“It’s a huge compliment for us that we awoke such desires, but it’s not the general idea of our path to allow players a transfer following the first available offer.
“Our goal is to become a big and established club, and what we did this summer is a substantial step towards it.”
With Liverpool willing to play the waiting game, it seems negotiations are still likely to stretch long into the summer. Nonetheless, Keita should edge closer to a move to Merseyside, with an improved offer expected from the Reds this week.
Another player that is expected to join Klopp’s squad this summer is Hull City left-back Andrew Robertson, as the Liverpool boss looks for support for current first choice James Milner.
Liverpool were reportedly closing in on a £8 million deal for the Scotland international who has one year left on his current deal with Hull City. Robertson could become the Reds’ 3rd summer signing and the deal could be in place by the time the Reds head to Germany to take on Hertha Berlin.
It is reported that Liverpool winger Ryan Kent could make the move to Hull City on a season-long loan. Along with Connor Randall, Lazar Markovic and Sheyi Ojo, Kent was left out of Klopp’s squad against Wigan, with all four likely to leave either temporarily or permanently this summer.
Another target who could evade the German’s grasp is Arsenal’s Oxlade-Chamberlain after Arsene Wenger insists that the English is not for sale.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is currently with the Arsenal squad for their pre-season tour of Australia and started in Saturday’s 3-1 win over the Western Sydney Wanderers.
Speaking after that victory at the ANZ Stadium, Gunners manager Arsene Wenger underlined his intention to keep the 23-year-old in north London.
“Yes. 100 percent, I expect him to stay. No matter the speculation, he will stay.”
With this statement, Klopp may be forced to wait until next summer as Oxlade-Chamberlain’s contract is set to expire in 2018 should he choose not to sign a new deal with the Gunners.