Liverpool have reportedly set their sights on AC Milan outcast Mateo Musacchio as they continue their hunt for a new defender this January.
According to a report by Todo Fichajes, Mateo Musacchio has emerged as the latest target for Liverpool as they continue to scour the market for a new defender in the ongoing transfer window. The club has failed to secure the services of any new players so far, but are now seriously considering a move for the AC Milan centre-back, perhaps due to his low valuation.
Musacchio’s current contract at San Siro expires at the end of the season. As a result, the defender could be available for as low as €5 million, although AC Milan have shown no intention of offloading their player, despite his expiring contract. Liverpool, however, could accelerate the deal if they agree to pay the €5 million this month.
Milan’s reluctance in selling Musacchio in January is hardly surprising, though. The Rossoneri, much like Liverpool, have had major difficulties dealing with their injury crisis in the defensive department. Indeed, the issues with Simon Kjaer and Matteo Gabbia have already posed a lot of problems for Stefano Pioli, who has had to rely on the services of youngster Pierre Kalulu at times.
Musacchio, himself, does not boast a great fitness record, having suffered numerous injuries during his time at Villarreal and Milan. The 30-year-old notably sustained an ankle problem in the summer that sidelined him for more than five months this season. Earlier in his career, a fibula fracture kept him out for almost eight months.
In addition to his injury-prone nature, the Argentine has played very little football in recent years. He has fallen behind the likes of Kjaer, Gabbia and Alessio Romagnoli in the pecking order. And in the ongoing campaign, the defender is yet to feature in a single competitive match for AC Milan.
Liverpool’s interest in Musacchio, therefore, is rather puzzling, although the 30-year-old does admittedly provide a lot of experience. Throughout his career, the defender has featured in almost 250 competitive matches for Villarreal, 150 of which have come in the Spanish top flight. He also has the leadership qualities that could be useful for a Liverpool side who are missing Virgil van Dijk.
Musacchio, in that regard, could be a smart short-term solution for Liverpool during the second half of the campaign as the Reds look to see out the financial issues rather than desperately going big for a top quality defender in the January transfer window. The strategy might aid them in the long-term, with David Alaba being eyed as a potential target in the summer.