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Liverpool ‘add manager to their shortlist’ but could face battle with Man Utd for boss | Football | Sport

The Reds have been heavily linked with a move for their ex-player Xabi Alonso, whose Bayer Leverkusen side will go 10 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga if they win at Koln on Sunday. But that pursuit has been complicated by rivals Bayern Munich announcing they will part ways with Thomas Tuchel this summer, with the Spaniard also appearing to be their prime target.

And according to the Guardian, Liverpool now have an alternative plan, with Brighton manager Roberto de Zerbi added to a shortlist that already contains Sporting CP boss Rúben Amorim and current Germany manager Julian Nagelsmann. De Zerbi has earned rave reviews in England since taking over from Graham Potter at Brighton in September 2022, leading the Seagulls to a sixth placed finish in his maiden season.

That has meant European football in this campaign, with a Europa League last-16 tie with Roma coming up this month. And while Brighton’s league form has been more erratic in this campaign, they still lie seventh in the table despite having lost the likes of Alexis Mac Allister and Moises Caicedo in the off-season.

The 44-year-old has already cemented a reputation for playing open, attacking football, a notion that would endear him to Liverpool fans. But Manchester United too have been linked with an approach, with Ten Hag’s position under increasing threat.

New co-owner Ratcliffe has declined to publicly back the Dutchman, who has overseen 10 Premier League losses already this season. United also exited the Champions League at the group stage, and the ex-Ajax man has been widely criticised for his approach in the transfer market.

The club have been touted to make an audacious move for Zinedine Zidane, with the iconic Frenchman having been out of managerial work since finishing his second stint at Real Madrid in 2021. De Zerbi however, would undoubtedly signify a more economical move, and unlike Zidane he now has a track record of impressing in England.

The former AC Milan and Napoli player was previously in charge at Shakhtar Donetsk, but departed the club in July 2022 as a result of the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine. And he may now be watching with extra interest when Liverpool go to Old Trafford in the FA Cup quarter-finals this month – with the two sides also meeting at the same venue in the Premier League in April.

The Italian’s own FA Cup hopes were ended in midweek courtesy of a 1-0 defeat at Wolves. It appeared a missed opportunity for the Seagulls, given they would have had a last-eight tie at home to Championship side Coventry City had they prevailed.

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