Watford have raised their offer for Jerome Sinclair to £1.5M up front with add-ons that could take that number to the £3M Liverpool previously said would get them to sell the 19-yer-old attacker. Liverpool, though, continue to block any January move for the want-away youngster.
Sinclair has repeatedly signalled that he will not sign a new deal with the club, and has looked on his way out since hiring Raheem Sterling’s representative Aidy Ward as his agent last summer. In addition to Watford, he has been linked with a possible move to Espanyol this month or in the summer.
There have also been suggestions Watford’s owners could look to leverage their ownership of Udinese in Italy’s Serie A and Granada in Spain’s La Liga by having one of those clubs sign Sinclair when his contract runs out this summer and then loaning him back to their club in England.
Such a move would avoid having to pay FA-arbitrated compensation for the youngster and would mean Liverpool would lose Sinclair for next to nothing. Exploiting such a loophole could get Watford’s owners into trouble with the FA, UEFA, and the league of whichever club they end using.
As such, most assumed leaking reports that they could do that was little more than an effort to drive Liverpool’s asking price lower. They could then return with a slightly improved offer and, they hoped, Liverpool would be more open to getting a deal done.
That doesn’t look to have worked for them—either that or what it would take for the add-ons to be added mean it’s highly unlikely Liverpool would ever end up with the full £3M they were seeking. Given Watford’s well documented interest in Sinclair, it seems likely this won’t be the end of things.
The Times’ Matt Hughes further suggests that Liverpool may now be looking to use Sinclair as a makeweight in another deal, though what that deal might be remains a mystery as of yet.