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Liverpool Deal for Piotr Zieliński Reportedly Dead?

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Strained relations and the asking price have reportedly ended any potential move for Piotr Zieliński.

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The dream move to Liverpool may be over for Piotr Zieliński before the June entered our lives, according to the Daily Express. The 22-year-old Udinese midfielder has impressed on loan at Empoli this past season in his 35 Serie A appearances. It is believed that talks have crumbled into a sorry heap of "never wanted to buy/sell the player anyway" due to strained relations after Jerome Sinclair joined Watford FC. The Pozzo family own both Udinese and Watford, making matters more awkward than they should be in a similar manner to the central conflict of the highly-rated new Showtime drama Billions.

Zieliński confirmed contact with Klopp last month, which Udinese's sporting director subsequently substantiated later that month. There was something tangible about Liverpool's interest in the player, presumably driven by Jürgen Klopp or someone close to the manager. Around two weeks ago, it was strongly rumoured in Poland, the homeland of the player in question, that a deal was completed. Often with transfers, reports from a player's country can be a good indicator of whether a deal is likely to happen.

There has been talk of Zieliński being the plan B to Borussia Mönchengladbach's rising star, Mahmoud Dahoud. The 20-year-old wouldn't be cheap or probably available given that the German side's midfield has already seen notable departures recently. Christoph Kramer's two-year loan ended after 2014/15, Granit Xhaka joined Arsenal barely a week ago, and defensive midfielder Håvard Nordtveit is headed to West Ham United on a free transfer. Losing Dahoud at this stage when the player has two years left to run on his current deal makes not a shred of sense.

There's also the fee to consider, one which Liverpool apparently believe is too much for a player who still has much to prove. £10 million is the asking price, but for Liverpool, that's not reasonable at this stage of Zieliński's career. Before there are any strong reactions to this news, it must be pointed out that May is coming to a close ahead of a long summer. Rumours are just that until there are more threads to weave together or reliable information to draw conclusions from. This is a story that has emerged from a newspaper in England -- without any of the reliable club-connected journalists attached -- that was sourced from an Italian website, and once you've been in amongst the madness of a few transfer windows, you'll see deals die permanently or pop back up like Jason Voorhees.

What seems certain, however, is that Liverpool are looking for a composed midfielder to add to the options already at the club. Joe Allen is strongly linked with a move away, Jordan Rossiter has already departed for Rangers FC, and Liverpool have shown a lack of control in midfield at times. That may point to Zieliński or Dahoud as the player to bring something different, but a midfielder whose game is designed on craft and composure will arrive at some stage in the months to come.