Reported Liverpool transfer target Yeremi Pino will miss tonight’s game at Anfield, Villarreal boss Unai Emery has confirmed.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, as transcribed by liverpoolfc.com, Emery said that the 19-year-old wouldn’t feature.
“Yeremy Pino is going to be missing, he has an injury that is dragging on,” Emery said. “He trained yesterday but he won’t be able to play.”
It remains to be seen whether the Spain international will be available for next week’s return leg.
Pino makes a name for himself
In isolation it is potentially good news for Liverpool. Pino is a an exciting winger who has seven goals and four assists for Villarreal this season. The Spanish side will miss him at Anfield.
In February, he became the youngest ever player to score a first-half hat-trick in La Liga. He duly added another goal in the second half to take his tally to four in one game against Espanyol.
Pino’s sensational display that day didn’t come out of nowhere though. He was already a regular for Villarreal last season, and made his international debut in October last year.
The youngster has already registered a goal in the four games he has gone on to play for Luis Enrique’s Spain.
Liverpool establish contact
All this has inevitably led to reports that Liverpool may be interested in bringing the player to Anfield.
It’s claimed that Real Madrid are also tracking Pino, who reportedly has a release clause of around £67m in his contract.
At that kind of price, Liverpool would need to be sure before committing to any deal. Like with fellow reported target Arnaut Danjuma, the draw with Villarreal looked to have given Liverpool the ideal chance to have an up-close look at Pino.
That may now have to wait until the second-leg. Whether Pino eventually features against Liverpool or not, he looks likely to be a star of the future.