Jurgen Klopp is closing in on his first signing as Liverpool manager after Red Star Belgrade confirmed that they have accepted a £5.1m bid for teenage midfielder Marko Grujic.
According to Sky Sports, the 18-year-old has been the subject of unsuccessful £1.5m an £3.7m offers from Anderlecht and Stuttgart, but the Reds have met Belgrade’s asking price.
The Serbian club, top of their domestic league by 25 points, released a statement announcing the transfer on Wednesday. Grujic will stay on loan at Red Star until the summer.
“Everyone at Red Star wanted Marko Grujic to play here for 10 years, but the financial situation of the club dictates a different decision,” the statement read, according to Sky Sports.
“We wanted to respect the desire of the player’s father to stay until next summer and we agreed to pay Liverpool for a loan of six months. Income from the transfer solves most of its financial problems.
“Marko Grujic should continue to develop at one of the biggest clubs in the world. We are convinced, just like Liverpool, that he has the qualities to have a great career in England.”
Sky Sports add that Liverpool have agreed to pay Red Star 10 per cent of any future fee that they receive for Grujic, whose move to Anfield was very nearly scuppered by his protective father.
Grujic senior confiscated his son’s passport because of concerns about a move to England.
“I will not let them ruin my child,” he told Serbian paper Blic, according to Sky Sports. “His passport is with me and I pronounce that Marko is not going anywhere.”
But he changed his stance after pressure from Red Star, who are in need of the money.
The 6ft 3in midfielder has scored five goals in 21 appearances for Belgrade this season and has earned comparisons to Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard, as Sky Sports reports. Here’s hoping, Reds fans!
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