‘I’d lean more towards…’ – Neil Jones hints at who could potentially be Liverpool’s next signing

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Neil Jones has suggested that Liverpool could pursue Romeo Lavia as their next prospective summer signing, while not ruling out the possibility of Khephren Thuram coming to Anfield either.

The Reds have spent just under £100m on two midfielders already since the start of June, signing Alexis Mac Allister and Dominik Szoboszlai, and could well be in line to bring in at least one more before the end of August.

The Merseysiders are believed to have moved into pole position in the chase for Southampton prospect Lavia (talkSPORT), while they’re also reportedly ‘speeding things up’ in their pursuit of France under-21 midfielder Thuram from Nice (Rudy Galetti).

Jones was speaking exclusively with Empire of the Kop’s Substack when he addressed Liverpool’s prospective next step in the transfer window, saying: “I think Lavia would be a very interesting signing for Liverpool because he plays a little bit deeper than the other midfielders who have been linked; he’s more of a 6 than an 8, or has been in his short professional career. 

“Khephren Thuram… Liverpool clearly like him and have liked him for some time. Whether France’s exit from the European U21 Championship impacts their ability now to go and get a deal done… Possibly. I think it doesn’t make it any more difficult. I think the question is obviously what kind of price Nice are selling at.

“I would be surprised if Liverpool were going to spend another £60m on a player. I think it would be more, at tops, £40m. That probably fits with these two players. If there’s a deal to be done, £30-40m for either player – Liverpool would be very interested. It’s whether it goes above that and goes into the £40-50m mark.

“I think it would be hard for Southampton to sit and demand that for a player who has had 30 games in his professional career and has just been relegated. Thuram possibly but Nice are a Ligue 1 club that doesn’t generally sell at that mark unless they’re PSG. I think there’s potential for either of these players.

“I think personally, if you were looking at what’s already been recruited, what’s already in the team, I think probably a deeper lying midfielder is more needed. Long-term certainly. So I think I’d lean more towards Lavia than Thuram.”

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While Jones has cited the Belgian as the more probable next arrival, he claimed in his own Substack that Thuram also remains ‘on the radar’ for Liverpool, so the Frenchman can’t be ruled out of the running as things stand.

Although Southampton reportedly want £50m for Lavia, with the Reds due to offer £10m less (Football Insider), Jorg Schmadtke could seek to haggle the Saints into selling for slightly less than their mooted asking price, especially if the player pushes for a Premier League move.

Galetti cited a potential outlay of €40m-€45m (£34.4m-£38.7m) for the Nice midfielder, which’d tie in with the price bracket mentioned by Jones.

Either would seem like plausible signings for those prices, but like the reporter has stated above, Liverpool may look towards defensive midfield signings now that two attack-minded options in Mac Allister and Szoboszlai have arrived.

While both Lavia and Thuram have played primarily as a number 6, the Belgian has had a higher proportion of games in that role (Transfermarkt); and as two years the Frenchman’s junior, he could also have a slight age advantage.

It promises to be very interesting to see which of the two the Reds pursue as a priority as they seek to continue their summer rebuild.

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