Al-Ittihad are interested in signing Ibrahima Konate from Liverpool ahead of the transfer deadline after Jean-Clair Todibo turned them down, according to reports.
The France international played in the Reds’ first two Premier League matches but missed their 2-1 victory over Newcastle at the weekend through injury.
Jurgen Klopp issued an update on Konate’s injury over weekend, the Liverpool boss said: “He will be back after the international break. Not too serious, but serious enough. Maybe a chance for [Aston] Villa, but I expect him to be back after the international break.”
Konate is an essential part of Klopp’s plans for this season and would no doubt be loath to allow one of his starting centre-backs to leave the Premier League club.
Liverpool have already been stung by Saudi Arabian interest in their players this summer with Jordan Henderson and Fabinho both leaving for the Middle East.
Interest from Al-Ittihad in Mo Salah has grown over the last week with rumours they are preparing a €150m (£128m) offer for the winger, while they are prepared to offer him £191m in wages a year.
Joe Gomez has also been linked to the Saudi Pro League side and now RMC Sport journalist Fabrice Hawkins is reporting that Al-Ittihad have “sounded out” a move for Liverpool defender Konate.
Hawkins tweeted: “Saudi club Al-Ittihad, where K.Benzema plays, made an offer to JC Todibo but also sounded out I.Konaté. Todibo refused a big offer. He should stay in Nice even if Mr. United keeps an eye on him Konaté feels good at #LFC where he wants to achieve his goals.”
Joao Felix, who was on loan at Chelsea last season, has been linked to Liverpool and Steve McManaman reckons the Atletico Madrid forward “may suit” Klopp’s side.
McManaman told Betfred: “He’s having a bad time under Diego Simeone. Simeone doesn’t want him to play, the club has an abundance of forwards as well and it looks as if Joao can’t find a home at the moment. He’s available, of course he is, and he may suit a team like Liverpool considering the way he plays but this link is just a rumour.
“Atletico Madrid would want a lot of money from a suitor to sign him, but those offers aren’t forthcoming at this very moment. He would be a good player in a team that plays really nice football because he’s a very tricky player that has excellent close control and his movement is very good.
“He just doesn’t fit in a Simeone team. I don’t believe the loan to Chelsea last season was the right move for him and João looks a bit lost at the moment and that’s a pity.”