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Rumour Mongering: Al-Ittihad Target Liverpool’s Fabinho

According to the transfer chatter out of Saudi Arabia, Al-Ittihad manager Nuno Espírito Santo wants to sign the Liverpool midfielder.

Liverpool v Aston Villa - Premier League - Anfield Photo by Peter Byrne/PA Images via Getty Images

Liverpool holding midfielder Fabinho Tavares didn’t have the best season of his career in 2022-23, but the 29-year-old Brazilian international found something resembling his vintage form late in the season and was expected to be a major part of Jürgen Klopp’s plans for the coming season.

Those plans could be set to be tested, though, with growing transfer chatter out of Saudi Arabia claiming Al-Ittihad manager Nuno Espírito Santo has made the Liverpool man a priority target for a side that has already completed the signings of N’Golo Kanté and Karim Benzema this summer.

Jeddah-based Al-Ittihad are majority owned by Saudi’s Public Investment Fund, the same government entity that purchased Newcastle United last year and founded LIV Golf. In addition to their sportswashing projects, they own stakes in Uber, Boeing, Bank of America, Disney, and Twitter.

For Liverpool, it’s difficult to imagine the club as eager sellers given the already significant squad turnover this summer—and with their top rumoured target at the position 19-year-old Roméo Lavia, widely seen as a long-term project and not ready to start for a club with Liverpool’s ambitions.

If Fabinho were sold, it would require a late pivot to seeking out a player ready to start day one, and even then replacing an entire starting midfield in one summer would be high risk. If this progresses past the rumour stage, then, one would expect it is because the player is pushing for a move.

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