Liverpool could be one of the clubs interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti, according to one report.
The 30-year-old has long been considered one of Europe's finest midfield operators, and has won nine Ligue 1 titles since his move to France in 2012. In addition, the playmaker was a key member of the Italy side that won Euro 2020, beating England in the final at Wembley.
However, after 416 appearances for PSG, now could be the time to move on, say L'Equipe, who report that Atletico Madrid are in "direct contact" with the French side over a transfer.
It is reported that Verratti's agent Rafaela Pimenta — the protege and successor of Mino Raiola — is keen for the midfielder to move this summer, with PSG also ready for a summer clear out.
PSG still value their unwanted star — whose contract runs until 2026 — at a whopping €80m (£70m) and there has been no official bid yet, with Atleti (perhaps understandably) looking for more value.
Where do Liverpool come in? L'Equipe add that two clubs in England could also be interested in taking Verratti, teasing that one of them might be Liverpool.
Does this transfer make sense for Liverpool?
While Verratti is obviously an extremely good footballer, there are lots of reasons not to get excited about this one.
His age profile and wages (reportedly north of £200,000 a week) put this outside of Liverpool's usual remit.
Although at first glance this may appear similar to the deal the Reds pulled off for Thiago Alcantara in 2020, Verratti would require a much larger transfer fee, if L'Equipe's reporting of PSG's valuation is to be believed.
It is far more likely Liverpool will use their funds this summer on a younger, cheaper and more traditionally defensive-minded 'number six' in the mould of Romeo Lavia.
On top of everything else, Verratti is notoriously injury prone and has been unavailable for 42 games for PSG over the last three seasons. Having just discarded Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and with Thiago still on the books, Liverpool need another midfielder with fitness issues like they need Andy Carroll back up top.