Liverpool wanted to sign Samuel Umtiti from Barcelona in the January transfer window, according to reports.
This comes from The Athletic. They say that the English champions ‘briefly considered’ the prospect of signing the World Cup-winning defender.
Umtiti, 27, was the subject of interest to Liverpool sporting director Michael Edwards, who made ‘numerous enquiries’ about centre-backs during the final few days of the window.
However, the 31-time France international was reluctant to the prospect of leaving Barcelona forcing Liverpool to pursue other targets.
And as a result, Liverpool were able to complete the deadline-day signings of centre-back duo Ben Davies and Ozan Kabak.
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Davies, 25, joins from Preston North End, while 20-year-old Kabak has moved on loan from Schalke.
Both additions represent two financially shrewd deals from Liverpool’s behalf given the limited time in the January window.
Davies joins Liverpool for an initial £500,000 with the potential for a further £1.1 million based on a specific set of clauses.
Meanwhile, Edwards was able to finalise the acquisition of Kabak on a try-before-you-buy agreement of sorts.
A loan fee of £1m loan fee with £500,000 in add-ons was agreed with the option to buy in the summer, as opposed to an obligation. If Liverpool want to make the transfer permanent, a fee of £18m is seen as an ideal solution.
What RTK has to say – Umtiti a miss for Liverpool?
Indeed, the prospect of Liverpool signing Umtiti would have been an exciting one. He has been on the radar at Anfield since 2016, after all.
However, given the former Lyon star’s crippling injury record, it seems the Reds made the right decision in avoiding this particular transfer saga.
Umtiti, after all, has made just three La Liga starts and two substitute appearances all season, while he has clocked up just 35 minutes of action in the Champions League.
With Liverpool confirming the season-ending injury to Joel Matip on Monday, it would have been financially irresponsible for the club to bring in a replacement with a similar inability to stay fit.
So, it seems Klopp and Edwards did well in avoiding the temptation of pursuing a deal for the 122-time Barcelona man.