Last week, German publication Sport Bild drew upon Jurgen Klopp‘s historical praise for the midfielder as his contract talks with Bayern Munich hit an impasse.
This seemed farfetched, given he is already 29 and there are a wealth of midfield options at Anfield, and particularly as a big-money deal for Timo Werner has already been scrapped.
They claim “negotiations are very advanced between the player and club and only the economics have to be worked out between the two sides,” with a fee of €35 million (£31.5m) mooted.
It is even suggested that “the agreement between the player and Liverpool is done,” but while the club cannot afford to pay the asking price up front, a possible reduction or staggered payment could be arranged.
With journalists in Spain and Germany now in unison, there is more weight to the rumours, though they should certainly still be taken with a pinch of salt.
Wijnaldum is also 29, with his contract due to run out in 2021, and it could be that with no extension on the horizon a decision has been made to pursue an alternative.
The debate could rage on over whether Thiago is a clear upgrade on Wijnaldum, especially given the demands of Klopp’s system, but if speculation grows over the coming weeks, that could be the most feasible outcome.