James Pearce has confirmed that Liverpool are not preparing a move for highly-rated centre-back Sven Botman.
The Athletic journalist has suggested that recent speculation linking the Lille man with a switch to Anfield may have been the work of a third party hoping to “drive up” interest in the 20-year-old.
No talks over a deal for Sven Botman. Liverpool not considering a move for him. Sounds like someone is trying to drive up the price/interest in the Lille defender. #LFC
— James Pearce (@JamesPearceLFC) January 3, 2021
The ex-Ajax man has been one of several targets to be frequently linked with the Reds, as the club faces the opening few fixtures of the new year without a senior centre-half available.
The news will come as a disappointment to fans who will have hoped for some defensive reinforcement to be brought in during the January transfer window.
Of course, this doesn’t necessarily rule out any dabbling in the window, though it would appear more than likely that any business Liverpool does engage in will be outside of the expected array of targets.
Ozan Kabak is one name who has frequently popped up in association with Jurgen Klopp’s side, with the Turkish international likely to be available for a cut-price fee considering Schalke’s ongoing financial struggles.
With Liverpool facing life without Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez for much of the season – not to mention Joel Matip’s limited durability – it would seem a massive risk to go on without bringing a defender in.