2EPBJB7 Salzburg's Patson Daka celebrates after scoring during the game between Belgian soccer team KRC Genk and Austrian club RB Salzburg, Wednesday 27 November 2019 in Genk, on the fifth day of the group stage of the UEFA Champions League, in the group E. BELGA PHOTO LAURIE DIEFFEMBACQ/SIPA USA

Liverpool target Patson Daka’s agent admits “it’s time for a new challenge”

Liverpool are reportedly interested in Red Bull Salzburg striker Patson Daka, and the player’s agent has now claimed “it’s time for a new challenge” for his client.

Last month, Austrian publication Salzburger Nachrichten reported that Liverpool, Man City, Man United and Arsenal were all weighing up moves for Daka.

The 22-year-old has scored 30 goals and laid on 10 assists in 33 games for Salzburg this season, and it is rumoured that he would be available for around £17.3 million, with the Reds in need of reinforcements in attack this summer.

Divock Origi is expected to depart, while Xherdan Shaqiri could also be available, and the existing unit of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota requires bolstering after an exhausting campaign.

It remains to be seen whether Liverpool would push for the Zambia international, but Daka’s agent, ex-Tottenham striker Freddie Kanoute, has suggested he will be on the move.

“I think it’s time for a new challenge at the end of the season,” Kanoute told Sky Sport Austria.

“He really got started this season. He is developing almost daily.”

There is no indication yet of where Daka will move, but the inference is that he will leave Austria, and given Liverpool’s rumoured interest it is certainly a situation worth keeping an eye on.

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Tuesday, August 25, 2020: FC Red Bull Salzburg's Patson Daka during a preseason friendly match between FC Red Bull Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by Propaganda)

A further interview from Kanoute with the BBC World Service, in which he described himself as “almost forced” into becoming an agent due to the treatment of young African players by other representatives, indicates that he would not push Daka into a switch he isn’t ready for.

“When I finished my career, I said look I’m going to carry on helping the academy but I’m also going to set up my own agency,” the former Mali international said.

“Now we can just follow them from A to Z and make sure that the transition is done properly and we prepare them well and the follow up in Europe is done properly.

“I almost exclusively look after the players I have known from a young age.”

Kanoute’s comments suggest he would be easier to deal with than other agents, with the best intentions of his clients in mind, which suits Liverpool’s approach to recruitment.

Daka is among the most talented players the 43-year-old represents, and would arguably slot in well alongside the likes of Salah, Mane and Jota, with his experience in Austria giving him a platform to build on in the Premier League.