Liverpool have been told it will take a club record £85m to land Darwin Núñez from Benfica as Jürgen Klopp considers rebuilding his attack.
The forward is a leading target for Klopp should Sadio Mané get his wish to join Bayern Munich after six highly successful seasons at Anfield. Liverpool have rejected an opening bid worth up to £25m from Bayern for the influential Mané but the German champions are expected to return with improved terms.
Liverpool will not allow Mané to leave without receiving more than £30m and having a replacement lined up. Núñez, who was the top scorer in Portugal last season with 26 league goals and scored 34 in total, is high on Liverpool’s wishlist although Benfica want about £85m for the 22-year-old. Almería are due 20% of any profit that Benfica make under the terms of his €24m transfer to the Lisbon club in 2020.
Manchester United have also been linked with Núñez as they rebuild under Erik ten Hag but cannot offer Champions League football. Núñez was hugely impressive in Benfica’s Champions League quarter-final defeat by Liverpool in April, scoring in both legs, and was publicly praised by Klopp afterwards.
Liverpool will have to break their transfer record – the £75m paid for Virgil van Dijk – to meet Benfica’s valuation and secure the in-demand striker. The club have signed Fulham’s 19-year-old midfielder Fabio Carvalho from Fulham and hope to finalise a deal for Aberdeen’s right-back Calvin Ramsay this week.