Gini Wijnaldum could now stay at Liverpool, with the midfielder claimed to have had “positive talks” with Jurgen Klopp over his future at the club on Wednesday.
The Dutchman’s future has been up in the air this summer after he entered the final year of his contract with no development in negotiations over an extension.
Wijnaldum is believed to have asked for a new four-year deal, with Liverpool not willing to offer that, and with speculation over a move to Barcelona mounting, the No. 5 was predicted to depart.
But after his time with the Netherlands squad this month, Wijnaldum returned to Melwood in midweek and discussed his options with the manager.
Sky Sports claim these were “positive,” with the 29-year-old hoping to stay at Liverpool this season, lured by the prospect that “an offer of a contract extension from the club will be the result of a productive conversation.”
Klopp himself is said to be “keen for him to stay,” though whether that is on a long-term basis or simply for the final season of his deal remains to be seen.
Liverpool have seen the likes of Emre Can, Adam Lallana and Daniel Sturridge leave the club on free transfers in recent years, either due to the club deciding to move on or the player himself opting to depart.
Given Wijnaldum turns 30 and will be looking for a final big payday, it is a delicate situation for the Reds, particularly given the current financial situation.
On Thursday night, reliable Argentine journalist Juan Pablo Varsky claimed Liverpool had upped their offer for Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara to £27.9 million, which is closer to the Bundesliga club’s valuation.
Thiago is widely considered the likely replacement for Wijnaldum if he leaves, but the Spaniard rejoined pre-season training with Bayern on Friday morning as question marks remain over his next move.
Earlier in the week, the Independent‘s Melissa Reddy explained that the “ideal scenario” for Liverpool “would be keeping Wijnaldum, selling the excess midfielders and adding Thiago.”
Whether the club can secure reasonable deals for the likes of Marko Grujic, Harry Wilson and Xherdan Shaqiri is unclear, though, with no progress made in talks with interested parties so far.
If that scenario played out, it would undoubtedly be a boost for Liverpool, with Thiago given a campaign to adjust while Wijnaldum is still on Merseyside, giving Klopp two top-level options along with Fabinho, Jordan Henderson and Naby Keita.