Liverpool are not prepared to give up on their pursuit of Marco Asensio and are preparing a bid of 180 million euros to test Real Madrid’s resolve over the 22-year-old Spain midfielder, according to reports on regional television station Telemadrid.
Asensio was asked about the possibility of joining Jürgen Klopp’s side during a press conference in Krasnodar on Tuesday and played a straight bat: “It’s something that has come up before but I am very focused on the World Cup. When the tournament finishes there’ll be talk about this type of thing, but right now I’m just concentrating on putting in a good tournament with Spain.”
Klopp has been an admirer of Asensio for some time and considers him to be the perfect successor to Philippe Coutinho, who moved to Barcelona during the January transfer window for a fee of 160 million euros. The German tactician asked the Liverpool board to make a move for the midfielder last year, leading to an opening bid of 50 million euros, which was rejected out of hand.
Real Madrid remain confident over Asensio's commitment
The Bernabéu board then made their move, handing Asensio a new contract running until 2023 and inserting a buy-out clause of 700 million euros into the deal.
Liverpool returned with a bid of 150 million euros this year but were again rebuffed by Madrid, who signed Asensio from Mallorca in December 2014 for just 3.9 million.
According to Telemadrid, Liverpool are now willing to use all of the money they received for Coutinho and add a little on top to make a bid of 180 million euros for Asensio, which would convert the 22-year-old into the second-most expensive player of all time ahead of Coutinho.
However, the Bernabéu remains confident that the highly rated midfielder will remain in Madrid this summer.