Liverpool missed out on South American wonderkid who chose Qatar instead

Liverpool were among the clubs tailing Uruguay starlet Fabricio Diaz before he completed a shock move to Qatari side Al-Gharafa this month, according to one report.

20-year-old Diaz is rated as one of South America's top young talents, having captained his country to the Under-20 World Cup this summer, while the midfielder had been touted for a move to one of Europe's biggest clubs.

90min report that Diaz, who coincidentally played for Liverpool Montevideo in Uruguay, held talks with the Premier League's Liverpool along with Chelsea, Manchester United, Brentford and Brighton. Barcelona and various continental sides were also name-checked as interested.

However, a move to Europe failed to materialise during the transfer window and Diaz instead signed a five-year deal to join Qatar Stars League side Al-Gharafa for around €6m on 18 September, surprising many around the footballing world.

90min claim that Diaz 'fully intends' to move to Europe in the future, suggesting he could transfer again before the 2026 World Cup.

Diaz, who is yet to make his senior Uruguay debut, is joined in Qatar by ex-Liverpool star Philippe Coutinho, who joined Al-Duhail on loan from Aston Villa.

Liverpool, meanwhile, revamped their midfield with a quartet of midfield signings this summer – Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Wataru Endo and Ryan Gravenberch – totalling £145m.

While links to more midfielders persist, Anfield Watch understands that the Reds' recruitment team is now focussed on the defence, with Piero Hincapie and Yukinari Suguwara among those being looked at.

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