Liverpool’s top midfield target is Naby Keïta and the club are currently deciding if they will make one final, £70M bid for the Guinean or move on. Even if they make a last push to sign the 22-year-old, it’s possible RB Leipzig would turn it down. Either way, then, it appears the time to talk about Plan B is at hand.
And in Germany, Bild are claiming that Schalke midfielder Leon Goretzka could be that Plan B, with Liverpool potentially placed to beat Arsenal to the young German international should their pursuit of Keïta end within the next few days. As far as potential Plan Bs go, it would be difficult for Liverpool to do much better.
The problem might be that, so far at least, Arsenal’s interest has been frustrated by Schalke’s unwillingness to deal and Goretzka being unwilling to push for a move to join them this summer. Liverpool, though, could use Champions League football and the presence of Jürgen Klopp to sway the player towards Anfield.
That, combined with a willingness to match any reasonable asking price Schalke might have straight away in order to get a deal done quickly, could leave Arsenal out in the cold despite their months-long chase of the young German star who is also reportedly on the short-lists of Bayern Munich and Manchester City.
Arsenal’s hopes had been that other clubs would get their preferred targets, giving them a free run at Goretzka, and with City moving for other players and Bayern apparently willing to wait to try to sign the midfielder—who has just a year on his current deal—to a pre-contract in January, they appeared to have a chance.
If Liverpool’s final bid for Naby Keïta fails, though, or if they decide not to make that final bid, a hard push to secure Goretzka could see the Reds steal him away from the Gunners.