In addition to replacing their midfielders, Liverpool is looking to strengthen their final line and hopes to secure a left-handed defender for their center backs, who are only right-handed. While this is not a top priority, it would certainly increase the strength of the squad.
With mainstay center backs such as Joel Matip and Virgil van Dijk stepping into the realm of veterans, and Joe Gomez’s growth slowing to a halt, only French defender Ibrahima Konate is hard to calculate in the mid- to long-term plans.
Gonzalo Inácio, the Portuguese defender from Sporting, has been reported as one of the candidates. According to the Spanish newspaper Fichajes, not only Liverpool but also Chelsea have shown strong interest and are preparing an offer of €50 million.
The Portuguese center back may not be a priority target for Chelsea, who have a number of left-handed center backs in their ranks, including Marc Cucurella, Benoit Badiashil, and Levi Colwill.
With the renewal of Colwill’s contract, it seems unlikely that they will actually make a move for him, as he has become even less of a priority. Other names that have been floated include Manchester United and Newcastle, who are also looking for their first Premier League challenge.
The center back, who will soon turn 22, has played a total of 81 games in the Liga Portugal Bewin. He has also made 13 appearances in the Champions League and has plenty of experience on the European stage, and in recent years has been a regular member of the Portuguese national team.
He is attractive to Liverpool because of his ability to pass the ball in a way that right-handers cannot. He would be an upgrade over Matip and Gomes, and would also rejuvenate the squad.
Recently, Trent Alexander-Arnold has been playing as a false back, and he sometimes plays as a three-back as he moves to midfield during attacks, and he could be a valuable asset in this situation as well.
Will Liverpool be able to win the battle with their rivals to acquire the Sporting defender…?