Liverpool are reportedly ready to firm up their long-term admiration of Duvan Zapata with a bid for the Atalanta striker in the summer.
Zapata came up against Liverpool in this season’s Champions League group stage. He did not score in either fixture, but that has not put off his potential suitors.
In Serie A this season, Zapata has scored nine goals and added five assists from 23 games. He is halfway to matching his tally of 18 goals from last season.
One of Serie A’s best strikers, Zapata is now attracting interest from the Premier League.
Liverpool have fallen well short in their title defence so far this season. It seems impossible that they will be able to retain the Premier League trophy.
Injuries in defence have not helped their case, but their attackers have not been their usual selves either. With that in mind, they may need to reinforce their frontline.
According to Todofichajes, Zapata has now emerged as a target for the summer.
The Reds are believed to be long-term admirers of the Colombian, but have yet to make an offer. This summer could be the time to change that.
However, Zapata will not come cheap. It is suggested that he would cost at least €60m.
That may mean Liverpool would have to sell one of their front three to accommodate him. But if big bids come in, they might consider their options.
Mane jumps to defence of Firmino
While there may be some dissatisfaction about the output of Liverpool’s forwards this season, their quality is not up for question.
One of those key cogs has now jumped to the defence of another, with Sadio Mane protecting Roberto Firmino from criticism.
“He deserves more credit than me and Mo [Salah], for sure. But it is part of football, always seeing the goals scored,” Mane told ESPN Brasil.
“But I think without Bobby I don’t see myself or Mo scoring as many goals as we have, to be honest.
“He makes everything easier for us. Brazil is lucky to have Firmino. I always say to Bobby ‘you have to change your nationality and maybe come to Senegal’ – which for me would be a dream!
“I just love him and he is my favourite team-mate.”