Liverpool midfield plan on hold as transfer rules prevent January move


Liverpool’s surprise pursuit of Wolves midfielder Matheus Nunes has hit a snag – as the Portuguese playmaker would be ineligible to feature for the Reds until next season.

Liverpool are set to shelve their pursuit of Wolves midfielder Matheus Nunes – as the Reds target would be ineligible to feature for Jurgen Klopp’s side until the 2023/24 campaign.

Nunes, 24, was linked with a move to Anfield back in the summer before Wolves swooped in to make the Portuguese ace their club-record signing in a £38million deal. However, reports earlier this week claimed that Liverpool had rekindled their interest in Nunes and were plotting to prise him away from Molineux in January.

Klopp’s side have major issues in midfield and are expected to try and bring in reinforcements this month. But it has emerged that pursuing a deal for Nunes in the winter transfer window would do little to solve those problems.

While Nunes is able to be registered by three clubs in one campaign, current rules and regulations mean he can only play for two clubs in a single season. Prior to joining Wolves in the summer, Nunes featured twice for Sporting Lisbon in the Primeira Liga at the start of August.

New Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui also cooled talk of a January switch when he was quizzed on interest in Nunes. He said: “I don’t know anything about Matheus. He’s our player, he’s happy here and wants to show his work for us. He is starting to show it but he has to develop for us.”

It remains to be seen whether or not Liverpool will move on to other targets this month. It had been expected that the Reds would keep their gunpowder dry in January with a view to overhauling their midfield next summer.

The likes of Jude Bellingham and Enzo Fernandez have previously been mooted as big-money targets; although the latter is pushing to join Chelsea this month and Real Madrid are reportedly now the favourites to land Bellingham.

Former Reds defender Jamie Carragher has insisted that Liverpool need to address their engine room issues sooner rather than later before expressing fears that his old club would miss out on qualifying for the Champions League without urgent midfield reinforcements.

After claiming that Liverpool ‘no longer looked like a Jurgen Klopp team’ following their 3-1 defeat against Brentford on Monday night, a concerned Carragher told Sky Sports: “They need a complete revamp in midfield. It’s like they’re trying to play the Jurgen Klopp way without Jurgen Klopp players. They’re now like a normal team in terms of the press, but they’re still playing that high line.

“We talk about Virgil van Dijk, he’s not been at his best, but no matter how good you are, you need protection from your midfield. If you don’t get protection you’ve got no chance.”


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