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Liverpool decide first transfer for next manager to avoid UEFA issue | Football | Sport

Liverpool are reportedly monitoring Fulham defender Tosin Adarabioyo ahead of a potential summer transfer as he could be made the club’s first post-Jurgen Klopp signing. The English centre-back has impressed under Marco Silva and could be available for free at the end of the season with his contract at Craven Cottage set to expire.

The London Evening Standard claim that Liverpool hold an interest in Adarabioyo and could battle AC Milan for his signature. The Reds are keen to sign a centre-back this summer amid doubts over Virgil van Dijk’s long-term future at Anfield, with Joel Matip also set to depart at the end of the campaign.

Liverpool’s pursuit of Adarabioyo does fall in line with their need for homegrown talent. With the club expected to qualify for the Champions League next season, they boast just four senior homegrown players in Trent Alexander-Arnold, Curtis Jones, Joe Gomez and Caoimhin Kelleher. Harvey Elliott and Conor Bradley still count as Under-21 stars.

With their threadbare homegrown player count it is a factor that will be considered heavily in their summer transfer business. Adarabioyo could go some way to solving that issue and relieving some pressure from Van Dijk, Ibrahima Konate and Jarrell Quansah next season.

However, Fulham are planning to offer the 26-year-old a new contract and signalled their intent to present fresh terms to the defender after negotiations broke down last summer. He holds a good relationship with Silva and will make a decision on his future at the end of the season.

Defensive reinforcements may be urgent after Liverpool captain Van Dijk hinted that his future was up in the air after Klopp’s surprise departure. The Dutchman’s contract is up in 18 months but he has since reiterated his full commitment to the club.

“It’s much taken out of context,” he said in an interview with Men in Blazers. “To be 100 per cent clear, I’m fully committed to the club, I love the club, I love the fans, it is full taken out of context.

“It’s not about me, it’s not about I, it’s about us and nothing has changed, five days ago we weren’t even speaking about my contract so it’s a bit silly.”

But regardless of Van Dijk’s plans, Liverpool’s need to add homegrown players and bolster their defence in the same summer suggests that both concerns could be addressed in one swoop for Adarabioyo and being a free transfer would be the cherry on top of the cake.

Liverpool have had success with bargain signings from Premier League rivals in the past, namely Andy Robertson and Georginio Wijnaldum, and could look to repeat that trick once again.

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