Liverpool 'always in the stands' for Goncalo Inacio amid Man Utd competition

Liverpool could still be in the running for Sporting CP defender Goncalo Inacio, according to Fabrizio Romano.

The 22-year-old was touted as a potential option for the Reds during the summer transfer window, with the club on the lookout for a young, left-sided centre back.

However, nothing came of Liverpool's interest and Inacio even signed a contract extension at Sporting CP, albeit with a €60m (£52m) release clause.

While Liverpool ultimately focussed on their midfield overhaul during the summer, Anfield Watch understands that strengthening the defence will be the priority in 2024.

According to Romano, both Liverpool and rivals Manchester United are keeping an eye on Inacio.

He told Caught Offside: "Inacio continues to impress as one of the top young defenders in Europe, showing huge potential with Sporting Lisbon and recently working his way onto Manchester United’s potential list of targets.

"But there is also Liverpool – the Reds have always been in the stands to scout and follow Inacio, but at the same time they never sent official bids or started negotiations.

"There’s nothing new so far, as he signed a new deal at Sporting in August as there was nothing concrete happening with UK clubs. Still, I think he’d be an amazing option for any club, Liverpool or United in particular; left-footed players at that level are very rare to find."

With Joel Matip's contract due to expire next summer and the first-team squad light on options, Liverpool are expected to sign at least one centre back in 2024.

Bayer Leverkusen's Piero Hincapie, 21, is another name that has been frequently mentioned, though Romano insisted that there is nothing 'concrete' in the links.

Anfield Watch understands that other defensive options are also being looked, besides just left-sided players, with AZ's versatile Japanese star Yukinari Sugawara among those in the frame.

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