Most people expect Liverpool to sign a forward, and they’ve been linked to more than a few as a result. From Timo Werner to Luka Jovic to Nicolas Pepe, if you have a favoured flavour of forward, chances are the Reds have been linked to one who would fit the bill.
Today, outlets in Italy including Corriere Dello Sport tried to add Lorenzo Insigne to the list, as rumours spread the 27-year-old was being tempted to leave Italy by a Liverpool offer. In an unusual step, Jürgen Klopp directly addressed the rumour, flat-out denying it.
“We will not sign Lorenzo Insigne,” the Liverpool manager said when asked about Insigne at his pre-match press conference for Friday’s game against Huddersfield Town. “He is a very good player but he has a long-term contract at Napoli. We will not even try it.”
Insigne’s qualities, and his goal return—nine goals and six assists in Serie A this season at a rate of a goal or assist every 127 minutes—would have made him an intriguing target. Those paying attention, though, would have known his age made him an unlikely target.
After all, Liverpool don’t expect to be replacing any of their current starting forwards this summer, and that means any new attacking signing would arrive as fourth man for three positions. Which is why most assume the club will be looking at younger players.
All three of Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mané, and Mohamed Salah are currently in their prime years—the same as Insigne—and so paying a massive transfer fee and wages on even a very good player in that same age bracket simply wouldn’t make a great deal of sense.
Insigne never would have been a likely target, and it didn’t take Klopp’s denial of Liverpool interest to make that clear. If Liverpool do bring in another attacker as many believe they will, he won’t be the same age as their current starting trio.