Bayern Munich midfielder Thiago Alcantara was not expected to be a Bayern Munich player at this stage of the summer.
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All signs we’ve heard over the last few months have suggested that the Spaniard would leave Germany and link up with Jurgen Klopp at Premier League champions Liverpool.
It is a move that both the player and prospective new manager want to make.
However, we are about to see the calendar tick over to September - and there is no Thiago at Melwood.
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Plus, to further antagonise Liverpool fans, there are now reports swirling that arch-rivals Manchester United are interested.
For their part Bayern want a bid to come in this week so they can tie up all their loose ends ahead of next season.
So what’s happening and could Thiago actually end up at Old Trafford rather than Anfield?
Well, according to various reports in England, Liverpool have been hit hard financially by the Covid-19 pandemic. It’s why they missed out on Timo Werner and it’s why there has been a delay in the Thiago signing.
They’ve lost out on TV money and are losing money every time they have a game at Anfield without supporters.
United have been monitoring the situation but Mark Ogden of ESPN has suggested that their interest might be being overplayed to try and force action on Liverpool’s side.
Wijnaldum the key
The key factor in this might be Georginio Wijnaldum. As Ogden and Mundo Deportivo point out, the Dutchman’s contract is expiring in a year and there has been no progress over a new deal.
Barcelona, now managed by Wijnaldum’s former national team boss Ronald Koeman, are reportedly interested in signing him and want to bring him to Spain.
If he does move that would give Liverpool some space in their wage budget as well as a bit of transfer money to be able to bring in Thiago.
Liverpool are still reportedly the favourites for Thiago ultimately - but time is certainly running out for them to get this deal done.