Fresh off their victory over Stoke City in the season opener, Liverpool appear to have renewed their interest in Brazilian star Willian, as well as two other notable potential transfer targets, with the Sept. 2 deadline fast approaching.
Willian, who plays for Anzhi Makhachkala, recently called Liverpool a “great club,” according to ESPN Brasil. Manchester United and Tottenham are Liverpool’s main competitors for the midfielder’s signature. The attacking midfielder is valued at £26 million, with Liverpool considered the favorites.
"For now, all there is are talks," the 25-year-old told ESPN Brasil. "There was the Manchester City bid and that was turned down and that was a while ago.”
Should Liverpool miss out on Willian, they may turn their attention to Leandro Damiao, according to the Sunday People. The 24-year-old striker has been heavily linked to Tottenham in recent months, but much of the speculation surrounding Spurs in the past few weeks has been tied to the prospect of Gareth Bale moving to Real Madrid. For the moment, Bale is still a Tottenham player, and that could very well mean that the north London club have completed their transfer activity this summer, which strengthens the chances for Damiao to move to Anfield. There is also the fact that Tottenham have already spent big on securing Spanish striker Roberto Soldado.
Internacional’s valuation may prove a problem, however, with the club having demanded €25 million (£21.3m) from Napoli earlier in the summer. Damiao was the top scorer in last year’s Olympics but has not kicked-on as many expected since then.
Mamadou Sakho is another player reportedly on manager Brendan Rodgers’s radar. The Daily Star reported that the Reds have joined AC Milan in pursuit of the 23-year-old defender, who is valued at about £8 million.
The Express reported in June that Liverpool were monitoring Sakho. Paris Saint-Germain are thought to be ready to allow Sakho to leave having splashed out on former Roma center-back Marquinhos this summer. On Sunday, manager Laurent Blanc did not use the player in a home match against AC Ajaccio.
Sakho has been with PSG since 2007, but has seen his opportunities decline since the club began their spending spree, with the likes of Tiago Silva and Alex having previously been signed. He also has 14 appearances with France.
In recent weeks, Christian Eriksen and Toby Alderweireld of Ajax, Diego Contento of Bayern Munich, Victor Andrade of Santos, and Guilherme Siqueira of Granada, have been rumored to been on Rodgers’s radar.