18.08.2011, Keine-Sorgen-Arena, Ried, AUT, UEFA EL, PLAYOFF, SV RIED (AUT) vs PSV EINDHOVEN (NED), Hinspiel, im Bild Marcelo (PSV Eindhoven, #4) vs Nacho Casanova (SV Ried, #17) // during the UEFA Europaleague, 1st Leg Playoff Match, SV Ried against PSV Eindhoven at Keine-Sorgen-Arena, Ried, Austria on 2011-08-18, EXPA Pictures © 2011, PhotoCredit: EXPA/ J. Feichter

33-year-old centre-back reveals failed winter approach from Liverpool

Lyon centre-back Marcelo has revealed he turned down an offer from Liverpool at the end of the winter transfer window, before they settled on Ozan Kabak and Ben Davies.

The final days of the mid-season window were particularly busy for the Reds’ recruitment staff, with Joel Matip‘s season-ending ankle injury forcing a late scrabble.

A number of enquiries were made for centre-backs across the world, while unsuccessful bids were reported for Marseille’s Duje Caleta-Car and Braga’s David Carmo.

Kabak eventually joined on loan from Schalke, while Ben Davies arrived from Preston for £1.6 million, though Jurgen Klopp is still facing problems at centre-back due to injuries to Fabinho and Jordan Henderson.

Marcelo has now confirmed that Liverpool were hoping to bring him to Anfield from Lyon, but his commitment to the Ligue 1 club saw him turn down the opportunity.

“Liverpool? My agent spoke with them, but I feel good here. My dream is to win the championship with Lyon,” he told Canal+.

The 33-year-old – who has found a home in France after a journeyman career that has taken in spells with Santos, Wisla Krakow, PSV Eindhoven, Hannover and Bestikas – is in the final six months of his contract with Lyon.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, February 3, 2021: Liverpool's new signing Ben Davies sits on the bench as a substitute during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Brighton & Hove Albion FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This would have presented him as a cut-price option similar to Davies, albeit with considerably more experience at the level Liverpool require.

However, it is telling that Marcelo opted to turn down the Reds’ advances as he seeks an extension at Parc Olympique Lyonnais, with the prospect of arriving as emergency cover clearly not the most appealing.

Liverpool’s strategy in the closing stages of the winter window appeared to be to bring in at least two centre-backs, with one a higher-potential option for the future and the other a low-cost veteran.

Marcelo would clearly have fit into the second category, but it is likely he would have played considerably more football than Davies is expected to were he to have joined.