Lille striker Victor Osimhen has chosen to sign for Napoli over Liverpool, according to reports in France.
Osimhen has attracted interest throughout Europe after scoring 18 goals in 38 appearances during his breakthrough season in France.
The 21-year-old sat joint-fourth in the Ligue Un goalscoring charts, level with Neymar, before the season was curtailed due to the global pandemic.
Osimhen had impressed enough to be named as a ‘priority’ target for Man Utd this summer, while Inter Milan are among the continental clubs keeping a watchful eye on developments.
Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham have all also been linked with a reported £75m bid received for the Nigeria international in recent months.
French publication L’Equipe claimed a fortnight ago that Jurgen Klopp is ‘very interested’ in signing Osimhen although the report didn’t say that Liverpool have made a bid yet.
The report added that the fee for the Nigeria international ‘shouldn’t be a problem’ for Liverpool.
However, L’Equipe (via Sport Witness) now say that Lille are ‘preparing’ for his sale to Napoli with Liverpool out of the running.
There has been big progress this week with a deal ‘partly decided’ despite his transfer to Napoli not being ‘registered’ yet.
The report adds that the two clubs met up on Monday evening to ‘begin concrete negotiations’ after Osimhen decided ‘not to continue’ talks with other clubs.
That was to the ‘detriment of Inter and Liverpool in particular’ and Napoli boss Gennaro Gattuso is understood to have lower his own wages to get a deal for Osimhen over the line
The striker was looking for a club that will ‘make him play’ and Liverpool cannot currently guarantee that with their front three of Mo Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.