Bayer Leverkusen ‘block Liverpool approach for Piero Hincapie’

Bayer Leverkusen block an approach from Liverpool for Ecuadorian defender Piero Hincapie, according to a report.

Liverpool have supposedly had an approach for Bayer Leverkusen defender Piero Hincapie blocked by the Bundesliga club.

Jurgen Klopp is believed to be keen to add another centre-back to his ranks before the transfer window shuts, and Hincapie fits the bill in terms of what the German is looking for.

The 21-year-old started out as a left-back before recently transitioning to a central position, and he has played a key role for club and country over the past couple of years.

Hincapie was a regular for Xabi Alonso during Leverkusen’s run to the Europa League semi-finals last season, and he started all three games for his nation at the 2022 World Cup.

The defender is currently sidelined with a fractured metatarsal, but Liverpool have nevertheless shown an interest in signing him before the summer window slams shut next Friday.

Netherlands' Denzel Dumfries and Ecuador's Piero Hincapie in action at the World Cup on November 25, 2022.© Reuters

However, Football Insider claims that Leverkusen have rebuffed Liverpool’s advances and have informed the Reds that he is not for sale under any circumstances this summer.

Leverkusen have no need to offload Hincapie either, as the Ecuador international only signed a contract extension in February and is tied down to Alonso’s side until the end of the 2026-27 season.

Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea have also been credited with an interest in Hincapie, who boasts three goals and two assists in 76 games for Leverkusen, although he was also sent off three times last term.

Following Leverkusen’s hands-off warning, Liverpool are supposedly ready to focus their efforts on alternative targets in the coming days, as Klopp aims to refresh an ageing backline.

While Virgil van Dijk and Ibrahima Konate are undisputed starters when fully fit, Joel Matip has fallen out of favour and is expected to leave either this summer or when his contract runs out in 2024.

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp pictured in August 2023© Reuters

Joe Gomez also remains on the fringes of Klopp’s team, despite signing a new long-term deal last summer, while Nat Phillips has long been linked with a departure from the club.

Torino defender Perr Schuurs has apparently caught Klopp’s eye, and the Reds have another incentive to move for a new defender following a recent injury scare to Konate.

As things stand, it is unclear whether the Frenchman will be fit to face Newcastle United on Sunday, and his injury could supposedly deny Phillips a move away from Anfield once again.

Liverpool have added Wataru Endo, Dominik Szoboszlai and Alexis Mac Allister to their ranks so far this summer, and the former – who has been brought in as Fabinho‘s successor in the number six role – has featured as a centre-back during his career.

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