Jurgen Klopp is prepared for Jordon Ibe to leave Liverpool and Southampton as part of the deal to bring Sadio Mane to Anfield, writes Gary Jacob in the Times.
Mane has emerged as a £25m transfer target following Mario Gotze’s refusal to leave Bayern for Merseyside, but Liverpool could lighten the up-front cost by offering our 20-year-old winger to the south coast club.
Mane’s excelled at Southampton since signing two seasons ago, scoring 25 Premier League goals for Ronald Koeman’s outfit. Ibe went backwards under Klopp, and is available this summer – with Watford also considering an offer.
It would be a shame for us to let go of Ibe permanently, as he’s undeniably a talent – but if he helps us acquire the Senegalese, it might be a necessary evil.
Mane would inject pace and goals into attack, and at 24, he’s got plenty of years left at the top.
There is of course the argument that after missing out on Gotze, we shouldn’t be heading back to our usual hunting ground, Southampton, to buy alternatives.
We’ve spent huge money on Adam Lallana and Dejan Lovren, while also acquiring Nathaniel Clyne and Rickie Lambert from the Saints – to mixed success.