Liverpool journalist outlines ‘real problem’ Reds must overcome if they’re to sign Romeo Lavia

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Neil Jones has said that Liverpool face a ‘real problem’ in trying to sign Romeo Lavia due to their unwillingness to meet Southampton’s asking price up to this point.

The journalist has said that, while talks with the player are ‘ongoing’, the lack of any agreement with the Saints – who want £50m for the midfielder (Football Insider) – render any discussions irrelevant at the Belgian’s side, although he’s hopeful that a breakthrough will eventually be reached.

Speaking exclusively to Empire of the Kop’s Substack, Jones explained: There are talks ongoing, of course, that is the situation. The problem is that it almost doesn’t matter what the outcome of the talks between the club and Romeo Lavia are because there’s no agreement with Southampton.

“That’s where the issue is going to lie with this deal… potentially talks with other clubs. The real problem Liverpool face in this deal is the price of the player and the price that Southampton want.

“The last I heard, which was late last week, was that it was too high. They don’t view him as £50m investment at this stage; it would be a lot less than that.

“They’re not the only club to feel that way. I think Arsenal and Chelsea are pretty much in the same boat, and the question is whether Southampton are willing to lower that price.

“You would say, looking at it logically, where Southampton are, less than a month away from starting a Championship season, got a new manager in, got a player worth at least £30m – you think they would lower their demands at some point and do a deal.

“Until that happens, I think the issue is that there’s no deal agreed, and until that is the case, any conversations you have with the player are moot.

“There haven’t been any updates over the weekend. There haven’t been any developments as far as I’m aware in terms of getting further away or closer to a deal. It’s still at a bit of an impasse.

“I think there is a chance Southampton will do a deal. I think there’s also a chance that Arsenal and Chelsea look to do it as well, as will Liverpool. There are still some developments to come with this one but none at the moment.”

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It’s seemed clear for a while now that either Southampton would have to cede ground on their valuation of Lavia, or Liverpool would need to raise the amount they’re prepared to offer, in order for the 19-year-old to join the Reds.

The Saints are so far digging their heels in and unwavering from their £50m asking price, but as Jones hinted, there may come a point where they’re willing to accept slightly less and bankroll a tidy income which could fund some of their prospective transfer activity.

This may well turn into a scenario of who blinks first, and if it is the south coast club, it could then become a matter of which prospective suitor can move quickest to try and get a deal done.

It doesn’t look like a transfer rumour which’ll be settled any time soon, so Liverpool’s recruitment team would be well advised to try and make progress with other pursuits so that they don’t squander too much time on what could be an ultimately fruitless chase for Lavia.

Things may be at something of an ‘impasse’ now, as Jones described it, but there’s still more than enough time left in the summer transfer window for the picture to change significantly. If it does, the Reds best be ready to seize their moment.

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1 Comment

  1. I think his tranfermarkt valuation of £27m is more like realistic. He definately has potential but that has to yet be realised in a top team!

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