Keeping track of a long running transfer saga can be a bit tough. One minute, it looks like things are all set to go. The next, your dream transfer is dashed because you still do your transfer business via fax. Tracking the twists and turns are a chore and so TLO’s Narrative Ultras are here to round up the loose threads floating around and make sense of all the noise so that you don’t have to. Today, we take a look at what’s new with Liverpool’s pursuit of Nabil Fekir.
The reports over the past few weeks have made it clear that Jurgen Klopp’s top transfer target is the Lyon midfield ace. In recent news pieces, it’s also become clear that while the folks running things on behalf of Liverpool Football Club would like to see this deal inked before World Cup competition kicks off in approximately two weeks, the braintrust at Lyon would like to drag this out in the hopes of starting a bidding war. For his part, Fekir has played things to favor his boyhood club by indicating that he will not comment on any transfer until after the World Cup.
Today, whispers out of France indicate that Lyon are looking to line up replacements for Fekir, with Hatim Ben Arfa being a name bandied about. This rumor is not coming from a highly respectable source, so proceed with caution. But it is a thing that’s floating out there and would at least make sense for a team that is facing the specter of losing its most important attacker in short order.
But, of course, it wouldn’t be Liverpool if things didn’t go the other way for us. With that boost in the Fekir chase comes a bit of news going the other way as it appears that the slow down of the transfer may have been just the window that Lyon needed as reports from L’Equipe and Canal+ - reports later picked up and duplicated by German papers Abendzeitung and Sport Bild - indicate that Bayern Munich and Atletico Madrid have both jumped into the race for Fekir’s signature. As it stands, no concrete news has emerged to note that either of those clubs have even submitted a bid. And while there’s been no confirmation that Liverpool has submitted a bid, club-connected journalists like Paul Joyce have all confirmed Liverpool’s intense interest in Fekir. So, as far as Liverpool are concerned, a formal bid is a matter when and not if.
For now, it looks like we’re generally where we began: LFC are interested in Fekir, Fekir has not dismissed interest, and Lyon will do what it can to extract as much value out of any transfer. With more twists and turns assuredly to come, count on us to keep you updated.