Poland's Piotr Zielinski (left) and Ukraine's Yevhen Konoplyanka battle for the ball. (Picture by: Nick Potts / EMPICS Sport)

Udinese reject Liverpool’s offer for Polish midfielder Piotr Zielinski

Serie A club Udinese have rejected Liverpool’s £12 million offer for Piotr Zielinski, as they hold out for a higher fee.

Zielinski has been one of Reds manager Jurgen Klopp‘s key targets throughout the summer, likely as an alternative to German midfielder Mahmoud Dahoud.

The 22-year-old’s exploits with Poland at this summer’s European Championship have stalled negotiations over a deal, but with Adam Nawalka’s side crashing out of the quarter-finals to Portugal, movement was expected in the coming days.

However, according to the Express‘s Paul Joyce, Udinese have moved first, rejecting Liverpool’s £12 million offer.

That they have already accepted the same offer from Serie A rivals Napoli is a significant standpoint, given Zielinski’s reluctance to join the Naples side.

It would seem that Udinese are holding out for a higher offer from Liverpool, knowing that Zielinski is desperate for a move to Merseyside.

Udinese have previously been reported to be looking for closer to £15 million for the box-to-box midfielder, who would join the Reds to vie with the likes of Emre Can and Jordan Henderson.

However, Joyce insists that “Liverpool will not want to pay over the odds” for a player who made just one appearance in France this summer.

Zielinski played 66 games over a two-year loan spell with Empoli in 2014/15 and 2015/16, scoring five goals and laying on nine assists.

Klopp has clearly identified the youngster as a primary target for the summer, though Borussia Monchengladbach star Mahmoud Dahoud is also believed to be subject of interest from Anfield.

Liverpool are said to be willing to pay up to £25 million for the 20-year-old, perhaps indicating their preference.

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