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Gary Lineker has lauded Liverpool’s transfer business online as the Reds close in on a blockbuster deal for Benfica hotshot Darwin Nunez. Jurgen Klopp’s side are in pole position to snap up the 22-year-old striker after fending off interest from European rivals and Manchester United.
Nunez headed into the summer as one of the most sought after players in Europe after plundering 26 league goals in 28 games for the Portuguese outfit. And with Nunez’s stock at an all-time high, Benfica are set to cash in, with Liverpool poised to win the race for the prolific striker.
Liverpool’s swift swoop for Nunez has left a host of fans and pundits impressed, and Lineker tipped his hat to the Reds over the potential deal on social media, tweeting: “The Liverpool evolution continues.”
According to a report from The Telegraph, it’s expected that any deal for Nunez will eclipse the club-record £75million sum that Liverpool splashed out for Virgil van Dijk back in January 2018 – even though the initial fee for the striker is likely to be around £60m.
Liverpool have garnered a reputation for striking astute deals in the transfer market in recent years, and although they will have to pay a premium price for Nunez, the capture of the ex-Almeria star would be regarded as yet another coup.
Manchester United had earmarked Nunez as a potential marquee summer signing to kickstart the new era at Old Trafford under Erik ten Hag. However, United were reportedly reluctant to get into a bidding war with Liverpool, who can also offer the Benfica star Champions League football.
Although Nunez is expected to seal his dream switch to Anfield, Liverpool will be weakened by the departure of Sadio Mane, who is expected to leave the club in the coming weeks.
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The same report outlines that the Reds hierarchy are expecting Bayern Munich to finally meet their £40million valuation of the wantaway Senegal star in the coming days. The German giants have already seen two bids rebuffed for the 30-year-old, who has just over 12 months remaining on his current deal.
Although Liverpool are keen to keep hold of Mane, the two parties have been unable to come to terms on a new deal, and the striker is now keen on quitting Merseyside this summer to pursue a new challenge in Munich.
Mane had hinted prior to last month’s Champions League final that he had already made his mind up over his long-term future, teasing that he was open to a move away.
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