Liverpool transfer expert reveals truth over Osimhen, Musiala links; Romano addresses Phillips rumours

Joe Williams
Liverpool targets Kalvin Phillips, Victor Osimhen and Jamal Musiala
Kalvin Phillips, Victor Osimhen and Jamal Musiala have all been linked with moves to Anfield.

Liverpool transfer expert Neil Jones would “be surprised” if Victor Osimhen ended up at Anfield if he leaves Napoli over the next couple of transfer windows.

Italian journalist Valter De Maggio claimed over the weekend that Liverpool had ‘reached an agreement’ with the Nigeria international ahead of a potential move.

Osimhen recently got cold feet over signing a new deal in Naples, where his contract expires in 2025, with interest from the Reds reportedly part of the reason for his U-turn on a verbally agreed contract decision.

Reports have claimed that Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is looking to bring Osimhen – who is currently one of the most valuable players in the world – to Merseyside with Mo Salah expected to be the subject of interest from Saudi Arabia again in the summer.

But Jones, who is a football journalist covering Liverpool, insists the Reds are “not in the market for a No.9” and he’d be “surprised” if Osimhen ends up at Anfield.

Jones wrote in his Caught Offside column: “Victor Osimhen has been linked with Liverpool in recent weeks, but I would be very sceptical about this deal. The Napoli striker is clearly a superb player, but reports that a deal has already been agreed with the Reds are wide of the mark, and I’d be surprised if he was to end up at Anfield as things stand.

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“Liverpool are not in the market for a No.9. They have Darwin Nunez, Diogo Jota and Cody Gakpo to play that position at the moment, and all three of those players have the full faith of Jurgen Klopp. All are 26 or under, and seen as long-term players for the club.

“Nunez’s development, in particular, has been a big positive this season. The Uruguayan has worked hard on the training ground, and looks far more in tune with what is required from him, on and off the ball, if he is to play regularly for Liverpool.

“He took the No.9 shirt in the summer, and has now become the main striker for his country, and I expect him to go from strength to strength as this season goes on. He, for sure, is the future at Anfield, and I would not expect to see Liverpool spending big money on a centre-forward any time soon.”

Bayern Munich attacking midfielder Jamal Musiala is another player who has been heavily linked to Anfield over the last few months but Jones reckons “a deal right now would be a very difficult one for Liverpool to do.”

Jones added: “I don’t think there is a club in Europe who wouldn’t like Jamal Musiala in their squad, and Liverpool are no different. But admiring a player and signing him are two different things, as evidenced by the Reds’ failure to land Jude Bellingham.

“Musiala, I believe, is of a similar level to Bellingham, and as such would be very tough for the Reds to sign, both in terms of the finances required and the competition they would face. His contract situation at Bayern Munich is one that will be monitored, but I would expect the Bavarians to go all-out in trying to keep him. He’s the jewel in their crown, along with Harry Kane, and Bayern don’t tend to lose such players without a fight.

“Liverpool, of course, have already made significant steps in overhauling their midfield, and particularly their attacking midfield options. Szoboszlai and Gravenberch are players for the long-term, the best is to come from Mac Allister, who may well be better in a more advanced role, while the development of Elliott and Jones provides Klopp with two more potential stars of the future.

“Musiala, of course, is exactly that too, but while I’d love to see him at Anfield at some point, I’d say a deal right now would be a very difficult one for Liverpool to do.”

And Manchester City midfielder Kalvin Phillips – who was linked with a move to Liverpool over the summer too – has emerged as a reported target for Klopp in January but transfer expert Fabrizio Romano insists there are currently no negotiations.

“As previously mentioned, it’s looking increasingly likely for Kalvin Phillips to leave Manchester City this January, but I’m not aware of any negotiation with Liverpool at this stage, despite what’s been reported elsewhere,” Romano told Caught Offside.

“It’s very quiet around Liverpool as of now, no decision will be made in October for their transfer plans in the January window – it will be decided later this year.”