Liverpool-linked veteran goalkeeper expected to sign contract extension

With Adrian set to return to Spain and Caoimhin Kelleher seekings pastures new, it's no secret that Liverpool are in the market for a new goalkeeper this summer.

However, one man now unlikely to be heading to Anfield is veteran stopper Alex McCarthy.

McCarthy, who joined Southampton from Crystal Palace in 2016 for £4 million, is poised to sign a new contract with the Saints, according to TEAMtalk.

Since his arrival, McCarthy has made 147 appearances for Southampton, recording 38 clean sheets.

However, his most significant contribution came very recently as he featured heavily during the latter stages of the 2023-24 season, stepping in for the injured Gavin Bazunu.

McCarthy’s performances were pivotal in Southampton’s immediate return to the Premier League, including clean sheets in the play-off semi-final against West Bromwich Albion and the play-off final victory over Leeds United.

McCarthy in advanced talks with Southampton

McCarthy’s contract was due to expire this Sunday, making him a free transfer target for several clubs, including Liverpool.

New head coach Arne Slot had identified McCarthy as an experienced backup option for Alisson Becker.

McCarthy’s Premier League experience, having played for Southampton, Crystal Palace, Queens Park Rangers and Reading, plus his single England cap from a 3-0 victory over the USA in November 2018, made him a strong candidate for the role of third-choice keeper for the Reds.

However, with Bazunu sidelined until 2025, Southampton are determined to retain the 34-year-old, and would be able to offer him first-team football in the Premier League this coming season.

This has seemingly swayed the keeper and "significant progress" has been made in the contract negotiations.

As a result, Liverpool must now look elsewhere. Having already missed out on the signing of Burnley's James Trafford, the club has blocked the departure of youth keeper Fabian Mrozek—for the time being at least—and are unlikely to sign off on any move for Kelleher until a replacement has been found.

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