Liverpool are reportedly trying to convince Kalidou Koulibaly to ditch his imminent move to Manchester City in favour of one to the Premier League champions.
Koulibaly has emerged as one of the most sought-after defenders in the world, with his fine displays at the heart of the Napoli defence winning him many admirers.
Clubs have, however, been put off by Napoli's steep asking price for the defender, with the Napoli president insisting that his prized asset would not leave for less than €100m.
Manchester City have long been the club most linked with the services of Kalidou Koulibaly, with Pep Guardiola known to be an admirer of the Senegal defender. It appears that the Etihad outfit have reportedly agreed provisional terms with the towering centre-back.
However, City's Premier League rivals Liverpool are said to be contemplating turning the player's head by trying to lure him to Anfield instead, and in this regard, they have reportedly 'employed' the services of his countryman Sadio Mane to convince Koulibaly.
According to French media outlet Le Parisien, Paris Saint-Germain are now out of the race to sign the 29-year-old, leaving the coast clear for Manchester City to get Kalidou Koulibaly.
Liverpool could scupper Kalidou Koulibaly's long-mooted move to Manchester City
The City defence has been a cause of concern for Pep Guardiola in recent times, and this problem was laid bare last season after the departure of Vincent Kompany.
The Spanish tactician has identified the signing of Kalidou Koulibaly to be of primary importance, but the tough stance of Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis in this regard has complicated matters.
City have since augmented their defence with the purchase of Nathan Ake from AFC Bournemouth, but Guardiola needs other alternatives beyond the Netherlands international.
It appears that Liverpool are primed to hijack City's move for Kalidou Koulibaly, with the Anfield club banking on the close relationship between the defender and Sadio Mane to help their cause.
The pair played together for a year at French side Metz and have been international teammates with the Senegal national team for the last five years.
Mane is expected to sell the benefits of a move to Merseyside to Kalidou Koulibaly, including the passion at Anfield and the joy of playing under Jurgen Klopp.
Liverpool and Manchester City have been involved in some iconic sporting rivalries in recent years. After losing their Premier League crown to the Reds last season, the Citizens would be wary of losing out on their top transfer target to their fierce rivals.Published 23 Sep 2020, 23:10 IST