Liverpool are reportedly keeping tabs on the situation of Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic, who is a transfer target for West Ham United.
According to a report from the print edition of Italian publication Corriere dello Sport, as relayed by Sport Witness, Liverpool are keeping a close eye on the situation surrounding Fiorentina’s Serbian centre-back Nikola Milenkovic. The 23-year-old is also a transfer target for West Ham United.
Milenkovic has been with Fiorentina since 2017, having signed from boyhood club Partizan Belgrade. Over the years, the towering defender has grown into one of the more reliable performers in the Italian top-flight even though the Viola have been on a steady decline.
Having entered the final year of his contract with the Serie A outfit, the 23-year-old is ready for the next step in his career. And, Milenkovic is not short on suitors with a host of Premier League clubs eyeing a swoop for him in the summer transfer window. Among those interested are Liverpool and West Ham United.
Liverpool, after suffering due to injuries and lack of cover in defence last season, acted quickly to reinforce their backline with Ibrahima Konate this summer. Joe Gomez, Virgil van Dijk and Joel Matip are back to fitness, while Rhys Williams and Nat Phillips remain options as well, meaning Jurgen Klopp has enough assets at his disposal, although that could change in the coming days.
Phillips is being heavily linked with an exit from Anfield while Matip could be used as a sweetener in a part-exchange deal for Real Betis midfielder Guido Rodriguez, which could open up a spot in the squad for a new centre-half, making Milenkovic a viable target.
As for West Ham United, the east London outfit are in desperate need of injecting some young blood into their ageing centre-back department. All of Angelo Ogbonna, Winston Reid and Craig Dawson are well into their thirties leaving David Moyes with Issa Diop as the only young option at the heart of the defence.
A move for Chelsea’s Kurt Zouma was mooted but, due to the costs involved in the move for the Frenchman, the Hammers have since diverted their attention to Milenkovic. In fact, recent reports have also indicated that West Ham have already made an opening offer of around £14 million for the 23-year-old towering Serbian international.
Only time will tell if Liverpool’s entry into the picture disturbs West Ham’s plans to land Milenkovic, or whether the Londoners are able to successfully close the deal for the Fiorentina star. For now, both the Premier League clubs maintain an interest in the defender.