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Rumour Mongering: Liverpool to Make Shock Swoop for Kalidou Koulibaly

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The star Napoli centre half would certainly make for a splashy signing, but we don’t buy it.

SSC Napoli v US Sassuolo - Coppa Italia Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

Back when Liverpool were busy buying Virgil van Dijk, there was another top centre half regularly being linked to the Reds as a potential dream defensive signing: Napoli’s now 27-year-old Senegalese-French star Kalidou Koulibaly.

Following the signing of Van Dijk, there was even a suggestion that Koulibaly had been one of two final candidates Liverpool had settled on before deciding to go for the Dutch colossus. Now, though, they could end up with both.

Or at least that’s the tale being spun by Il Mattino as well as a smattering of Italian and English tabolids today, and we’re just going to say right up front that as good as Koulibaly most certainly is, we don’t believe this rumour.

One big reason not to is that Napoli are said to be demanding €120M for the player—and given Liverpool are certain to value Van Dijk for more than that, it might not be an unreasonable ask for Koulibaly in the current market.

Liverpool, though, have other priorities. Depth at goalkeeper and left back as well as a versatile young forward. Spending that kind of money on any centre half given the current quality of their defensive corps seems unlikely.

It’s also worth noting that with Koulibaly more seriously linked with Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus, and Manchester United this summer, it’s easy to imagine Napoli thinking it would be useful to drop Liverpool’s name in the Italian press.

While we can’t say how interested any of those clubs might be or how willing to pay what Napoli are asking, we can be fairly certain Liverpool aren’t in the mix—though it’s a link that further speaks to Liverpool’s renewed standing in Europe.