Liverpool’s summer transfer plans have suffered a potentially significant blow after it was revealed that Leicester City have entered the race for RB Salzburg striker Patson Daka.
The Zambia international enjoyed a stellar 2020/21 campaign for the Austrian champions, attracting the attention of a host of the continent’s top teams as a result.
A fee of £17m is being muted for the clinical finisher, meaning he is well within the reach of the Midlands outfit despite their inferior budget.
Liverpool are thought to be in the market for a new forward ahead of the upcoming transfer window after both Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino had underwhelming seasons last time out.
Several names have been linked with the Anfield outfit as Klopp plots his way back to the top of the game, but Daka appeared to be the strongest candidate after bagging an incredible 34 goals in all competitions during 2020/21.
The 22-year-old’s standout displays earned the praise of Salzburg manager Jesse Marsch, who lauded the youngster’s quality and potential last year.
“It’s just a lot of fun working with him, and I hope he continues with this development. He has a lot of potential, he is just a fantastic player,” revealed Marsch.
His arrival on Merseyside would be regarded as a sizeable coup for Klopp given Daka’s goalscoring record, but the chances of that happening may have just taken a substantial knock.
Leicester are likely to be able to offer the Zambia international guaranteed first-team game time, given the fact they have Europa League football to contend with and the need to ease the burden on 34-year-old Jamie Vardy.
The lure of regular minutes could be enough to persuade Daka to join Brendan Rodgers’ charges over Liverpool, leaving Klopp fuming.
If the Reds are to return to their former glory under the enigmatic German manager, then director of football Michael Edwards is going to have to perform well in the market over the summer, but he may have already missed out on one of his key transfer targets. Klopp won’t be happy at all.