Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester City are reportedly ready to fight it out with each other for the signing of OGC Nice striker Amine Gouiri.
According to a report from Spanish publication Fichajes, Real Madrid have entered the race to sign 21-year-old French forward Amine Gouiri, who is also a transfer target for Premier League bigwigs Liverpool and Manchester City.
Gouiri is a product of the Olympique Lyon academy. Having joined Les Gones’ youth setup in 2013, the striker rose through the ranks, making rapid strides to break into the first-team in 2017, at the tender age of 17. However, he made just 15 senior appearances for the club, before signing for OGC Nice in the summer of 2020.
Since arriving at his new club, Gouiri has hit a new level, as he enjoyed a fine debut campaign, scoring 16 goals and setting up eight more from 41 matches across all competitions, emerging as one of the most exciting young forwards in France. The 21-year-old has started the 2021/22 season on a similar note as well, already bagging five goals and two assists in seven league matches.
Capped 14 times by the French Under-21 national team, Gouiri has registered himself on the radars of several top clubs across Europe, including Real Madrid, Liverpool and Manchester City. While Real Madrid are reaping the rewards of the class and quality of Karim Benzema, they will eventually need to replace the 33-year-old in the near future.
Moves for both Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappe are being plotted for the summer next year, but with the likes of Luka Jovic, Mariano Diaz out of favour, adding another striker to the mix, even if they do end up signing the superstar duo, would not be the worst idea for Los Blancos. And, Gouiri, who has been likened to Karim Benzema, would thus be a viable transfer target.
The interest from Liverpool in Gouiri first surfaced earlier this month, with reports claiming that manager Jurgen Klopp had specifically asked the club for Gouiri’s signing. It is an understandable move as considering that Roberto Firmino’s returns in front of the goal have diminished over the past couple of seasons while Divock Origi seems to be headed out of the club in the near future.
Adding another natural striker, to that end, becomes a necessity for Liverpool. Names such as Haaland, Karim Adeyemi have been mentioned but Gouiri, given his playing style, could be a better fit at Anfield. However, apart from Real Madrid, the Reds will now have to stave off competition from arch-rivals and Premier League champions Manchester City.
The Cityzens’ search for a new centre-forward is no secret. Pep Guardiola’s side spent the last summer chasing Harry Kane as they sought to replace Sergio Aguero, but failed in their pursuit. With a late move for Cristiano Ronaldo also not bearing fruit, Manchester City went into the new season with Gabriel Jesus as the only senior striker at the club, something that they want to address at the earliest.
Like Liverpool, they too have been linked with Haaland, but Gouiri could provide a cheaper alternative for the Cityzens, although the transfer fee should never really be an issue when it comes to reigning champions of England. What now remains to be seen is if any of the three clubs do make an attempt to land the striker in January or the summer.