The 21-year-old midfielder Dani Ceballos is one of the top rated midfield prospects in Europe, a status that earned him a £15M move to Real Madrid from Betis last summer. Since then, though, the player’s minutes have been limited and he has begun to worry he will not be given a chance to break through for the Spanish giants.
According to Spanish journalist Cristobal Soria, who covered Ceballos as he rose through the ranks at Betis, that realisation led him to push for a move to Liverpool in January when the English club showed interest in signing him following the departure of Philippe Coutinho. And come summer a move could still happen.
Given his age and limited playing time this season—he’s seen just 186 minutes of action in La Liga and most of his playing time has come in the Copa del Rey—it’s hard to see Ceballos as a player who would be signed to make an immediate impact. He’s likely good enough to start as the first midfielder off the bench, though.
Then, there’s the upside. Madrid were quick to snap Ceballos up from Betis for good reason, and the flexible midfielder—he’s well suited to playing a shuttling role in Jürgen Klopp’s midfield three and could with time develop into a top number ten—could well become a player of Coutinho’s calibre with regular playing time.
If Soria is correct and he wants a move to Liverpool, and if a deal can be done for around what Madrid paid to sign him from Betis, it would be a no-brainer deal for the Reds for a player who might not be quite as far along as someone like Thomas Lemar but who has just as much upside as the £90M-rated Monaco man.