Liverpool have received a massive boost in their bid to sign Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul after talks with Barcelona were called off.
According to Ara and Mundo Deportivo, via AS, talks between the two La Liga clubs over a sensational deal to swap Saul for Antoine Griezmann have been called off.
The reason being is the finances involved are reported to be irreconcilable, with Atleti refusing to pay the French forward’s wages.
Atleti president, however, hasn’t totally ruled out the possibility of a move, saying: “In the football world, everything is possible…”
For Liverpool, this is exactly what they would have been hoping for. The Reds have made a €40m plus bonuses bid but the Spanish club wants €50m all cash.
Recently, it was claimed by Moby Haque that if the Merseysiders submit a second, improved offer they could sign Saul.
He also added that Fernando Torres spoke about the club in ‘glowing terms’ which was corroborated by Mercado ATM, as cited by Anfield Buzz, who say that El Nino “has advised Saúl that if he has to go, he should choose Liverpool over Barcelona. Saul is thinking about it.”
If they can match Atleti’s asking price of €50m, it seems like a deal could happen but it does remain to be seen if the Reds would be willing to pay that much.
Saul isn’t old by any stretch of the imagination but assuming he would sign a five year deal with the Reds, by the end of his initial terms with the club, he would be 31.
Purely in that regard, it doesn’t seem like a typical FSG signing but in every other sense, he would be superb for Liverpool.
Their move to sign Thiago last summer suggests that FSG are willing to deviate from the script from time to time to get a player that Jurgen Klopp is desperate to work with.
I’m not sure if Saul is necessarily one such player as he isn’t quite as ‘special’ as Thiago is, with the 30-year-old one of the most technically gifted midfielders of his generation.