Newcastle United are set to play hardball over the future of midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum, ahead of talks with Liverpool.
Wijnaldum has emerged as a priority target for Reds manager Jurgen Klopp after a failure to sign Piotr Zielinski from Udinese.
The Dutchman is said to be valued at up to £27 million, though Liverpool are looking to complete a deal for closer to £20 million.
But as the Newcastle Chronicle‘s Lee Ryder has told the Liverpool Echo, Newcastle will only agree a deal if they are paid the full fee up front.
Whether that is Newcastle’s full valuation remains to be seen, though Ryder believes the Magpies won’t do business for anything under £25 million.
This is due to owner Mike Ashley telling Newcastle manager Rafa Benitez that he is “under no pressure to sell to buy.”
Finding themselves in a similar situation to Crystal Palace in their efforts to sign Christian Benteke, Liverpool could now be forced to compromise and accept Newcastle’s terms.
Klopp is likely looking to secure Wijnaldum’s signature ahead of Liverpool’s pre-season tour of the US, as well as that of Augsburg centre-back Ragnar Klavan.
Klavan arrived on Merseyside on Tuesday morning, and underwent a medical with the club ahead of a £4.2 million move.
The Reds will travel directly after Wednesday night’s friendly clash away to Huddersfield Town, with Klopp finally linking up with his full squad after summer breaks for his internationals.
After having suffered disappointment in their pursuit of both Zielinski and Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud, Klopp will not want to miss out on Wijnaldum this summer.
A strong, powerful goalscorer, Wijnaldum would make an excellent addition to Klopp’s midfield ranks, with his versatility allowing him to slot into a number of roles.