Liverpool: Ornstein gives verdict on ‘surprising’ Barcelona transfer ahead of ‘crunch’ Salah talks’

Lewis Oldham
Liverpool transfer
Luis Diaz and Mohamed Salah on the Liverpool bench.

The Athletic’s David Ornstein has offered his thoughts on reports linking Liverpool winger Luis Diaz with a move to Spanish giants FC Barcelona.

Diaz’s career at Liverpool got off to a stunning start but he has arguably not been at his best since suffering a serious knee injury towards the end of 2022.

The Columbia international has the potential to be electric as he can be a nightmare for defenders to deal with, but he is often wasteful with his chances and he has been linked with a move elsewhere ahead of this summer.

“I would be very surprised…”

La Liga outfit Barcelona are understood to be interested in Diaz. Yet, Ornstein – speaking via a Q&A for The Athletic – would be “very surprised” if they “could afford the level of fee Liverpool would demand”.

“I have no information on this reported interest in Diaz, Brandon. Never say never but, given Barca’s financial position, I would be very surprised if they could afford the level of fee Liverpool would demand and meet the Colombian’s salary expectations,” Ornstein responded.

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“Liverpool are not looking to sell Diaz: he is 27, under contract until 2027 and a really important member of their squad. What we don’t know for certain is his intentions. It is quite unusual for such a key player at Anfield to be two and a half years into their deal and not have seen their terms improved/extended.

“Equally, there is a lot going on at Liverpool right now and the contract situations of Mohamed Salah, Virgil van Dijk and Trent Alexander-Arnold (mentioned below) are of more immediate concern.

“Clearly, this is one to watch — although that certainly does not mean he will be leaving.”

Regarding Salah, Football Insider claim Liverpool are set to ‘hold crunch exit talks’ with the Egypt international.

‘Salah, who turns 32 next month, has just one year remaining on his current contract and the Merseysiders and the Egyptian superstar will make a joint decision on his future following the end of the season.

‘The talks will surround his immediate future and whether he will remain with the Merseyside club for the duration of his deal.

‘Football Insider reported that a £100million bid for Salah could arrive from a Saudi Arabia club this summer after he came close to joining last August.’

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