Liverpool face an injury crisis in defence, with Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, and Joe Gomez all currently out injured. It’s going to mean a major headache for Jürgen Klopp trying to figure out his back line over the next month.
For some, it will also make a report out of Brazil today that claims Liverpool are tracking the player widely regarded as that nation’s best young defender, Eder Militao, a 20-year-old who currently plies his trade for FC Porto, even more intriguing.
Militao, who has been named the Portuguese league’s best defender each month from September on, has been linked with a move to Real Madrid in recent weeks and can play as a right back, centre half, or defensive midfielder.
However, UOL say Madrid isn’t his dream destination. Instead, he wants the Premier League, and UOL say Liverpool have made inquiries into his availability—as have Manchester United and, perhaps less interestingly for the player, Everton.
Militao only arrived at Porto over the summer, when he signed from Sao Paulo for a bargain fee reported to be just €4M. Any club that wants him now would likely have to pay ten times that, as the defender has a release clause of €45M.
It’s a steep price, but there isn’t a more highly regarded young Brazilian defender in the game right now, and his half-season at Porto will have confirmed the hype surrounding him and would likely earn him an English work permit.
His flexibility would also come in handy, helping the player to see significant minutes at a big club even if he didn’t immediately lock down a starting job—though on the evidence of his time at Porto, it wouldn’t take long for him to do that.
Still, assuming Madrid and United aren’t ready to pull the trigger just yet—and that Jürgen Klopp thinks his side can ride out its injury crisis—it might be best to give Militao another six months at Porto before throwing that kind of money around.