As Liverpool moved quickly last week to sign Dominik Szoboszlai from RB Leipzig by triggering the attacking midfielder’s €70M release clause, some wondered what that might mean for the Reds’ interest in Nice’s Khéphren Thuram.
Now, we know the answer, as following a pivot over the past two days by club-connected journalists from Thuram towards Southampton’s Roméo Lavia, multiple reliable reports have emerged today stating that any interest in Thuram has ended.
By any reasonable standard, it makes sense. Liverpool have spent close to £100M—including triggering Szoboszlai’s release clause in full—on midfielders suited to the two more advanced roles in Jürgen Klopp’s midfield, the position Thuram plays.
Thuram, despite the highly questionable suggestion by some that he could be an answer at the six when it’s a role he doesn’t play for club or country and his statistical template is a close match for Inter’s Nicolò Barella and Barcelona’s Gavi, is not a six.
Other than being the tallest and blackest of the trio including Alexis Mac Allister and Szoboszlai had he signed, it’s hard to see why people would argue he’s better suited to the six than either—or than Jordan Henderson. Which at best looks a little racist.
Still, Liverpool’s interest was by all accounts real. But when Nice weren’t willing to drop their asking price into a range the Reds believed Thuram was worth, sticking to a valuation above £50M, they saw the more polished Szoboszlai as a better option.