Earlier today, Liverpool fans learned that the club was unlikely to be able to secure the services of midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud this summer. Now, things may have just gotten more difficult in their attempt to sign their other main midfield transfer target, Piotr Zielinski.
Liverpool already knew that they would have to beat out Napoli for the player's services, with rumours that the Serie A side had made a €13M offer for him—beating the €11.5M Liverpool had reportedly offered Udinese—but now they may also have to beat out AC Milan if they’re to sign Zielinski.
Italian sources, since picked up by the rumour mongers in England, are reporting that Milan have signalled a willingness to match Napoli’s offer and that a bidding war is now possible. Liverpool still hold an advantage as the player prefers a Premier League move, but they’ll have to up their bid.
Of course, it could all be that this is nothing more than an attempt by Udinese to get Liverpool to improve on their offer, that neither Napoli nor Milan have or will make a solid bid, and that if Liverpool stand firm at €11.5M they could well still end up with the 22-year-old Polish international.
After all, it’s common for a selling club to leak information about there being other interested parties—regardless of whether there actually are. It could also simply be that the Italian media is looking to fill space by milking a transfer story that might just be waiting for the end of the Euros for Poland.
Unfortunately for Liverpool fans, it’s all but impossible to know for certain. The club could have real competition for Zielinski and might well be at risk of missing out on him. Or it might be a negotiation tactic by Udinese. Or it might be bored papers. Such is life during the transfer season.