‘Liverpool need Koulibaly, but not for silly money’ – Nicol hoping Napoli lower transfer demands

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Kalidou Koulibaly Napoli 2020-21
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The former Reds defender would like to see the Senegal international centre-half at Anfield, but only if the terms are right for all concerned

Liverpool still need to be looking at bringing in another centre-half, says Steve Nicol, but the Reds have been warned against paying “silly money” for Napoli star Kalidou Koulibaly.

A Senegal international currently plying his trade in Serie A is considered to be a perfect fit for the Premier League champions.

With Virgil van Dijk already a colossus at the heart of their back four, adding another commanding presence alongside the Dutchman would make Jurgen Klopp’s side even stronger.

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Napoli, though, have made it clear that they will not be dropping their asking price for Koulibaly amid coronavirus-enforced financial difficulties for many clubs around the world.

With reports suggesting that it will take upwards of €100 million (£91m/$117m) to put a deal for the 29-year-old in place, Nicol is not convinced that Liverpool should be narrowing their focus on one player.

The former Reds defender told ESPN FC: “If the money is right [it’s a no-brainer]. But clearly, they’re asking for silly money.

“The chairman at Napoli is well known for being tough to deal with. 

“If it’s silly money it won’t happen, but I’d like to see it happen. 

“The guy is absolutely in the prime of his career, he’s a great centre-back. Any team on the planet would like to have this guy, but it depends on the money.

“I think Napoli will be asking for too much money, so I don’t think it’ll happen. But it would be nice if it did.” 

Klopp has stepped up his recruitment business at Anfield of late, bringing in Thiago Alcantara and Diogo Jota from Bayern Munich and Wolves respectively.

Greek left-back Kostas Tsimikas is the other fresh face on Merseyside and Nicol hopes one more deal will be pushed through before the next deadline passes on October 5.

The Scot added: “The only real question mark is at centre-back.

“Joe Gomez hasn’t started the season particularly well, Van Dijk didn’t start the season particularly well.

“If there’s a wish list, it would be another Van Dijk-esque type player, a dominant centre-back who can play but is hard-nosed as well. That would be the wish list, but to be honest, we shouldn’t complain, Liverpool are not in a bad position.” 

Liverpool opened 2020-21 with defeat to Arsenal in the Community Shield, but have since rattled off wins over Leeds, Chelsea and Lincoln across Premier League and Carabao Cup competition as Klopp’s side start to hit their stride.

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