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A report claims Liverpool have opened talks with Ozan Kabak while another suggests they have made Dayot Upamecano a top target.

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Must-read Liverpool stories

Here’s a selection of some of the must-read Liverpool stories over the past 24 hours.

Traore battle

Liverpool are interested in signing Wolves star Adama Traore, but face competition from Man City and Manchester United.

According to Calciomercato, all three clubs are eager to secure a deal for the Spain international.

Traore last season scored four goals and provided nine assists in the Premier League, and was linked with the Reds over the summer.

Adama Traore of Spain
Adama Traore (Image: Jose Breton/Pics Action/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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Lallana opens up on 'rejection' of Liverpool exit

Adam Lallana has opened up on how he initially felt rejected when Jurgen Klopp told him he was no longer needed at Liverpool.

But despite being a regular in the early days of the German’s reign, he slowly became a squad player due to the elite quality added to Klopp’s squad over the past few years.

And although he was still with the Reds playing a vital part when they lifted the Premier League title, the 32-year-old had already known for months that his time with the club was up.

He said:

“I went in and asked the question because I wanted to know what my future looked like.

“I had half an idea what the answer would be, but felt it would be better to know and to have a frank conversation. We had that much respect for each other.

“It is a weird feeling when you get told that you are kind of not wanted any more. There is an initial feeling of rejection and I think that’s normal in any walk of life.

“But, after a couple of days, when I realised it was going to be my last season at Liverpool, I made sure that I treated every day, every training session, like it was my last and didn’t take anything for granted.

“I enjoyed the last six months as much as I did any year while I was at the club.”

Jurgen Klopp congratulates Adam Lallana after the midfielder's vital late equaliser at Old Trafford in October
Jurgen Klopp congratulates Adam Lallana after the midfielder's vital late equaliser at Old Trafford in October (Image: PA)

Koulibaly latest

Napoli director Cristiano Giuntoli has dismissed speculation linking Liverpool with Kalidou Koulibaly.

The centre-back is being tipped with a move to Anfield in January as a replacement for the injured Virgil van Dijk.

But Giuntoli, speaking to Sky Italia, has claimed the defender is “happy” and has three years left on his contract with the Naples club.

He said:

“Keeping him this summer was less difficult than in other transfer windows.

“With a three-year contract he was happy to stay, without any problems or difficulties. He is very happy here.”

Kalidou Koulibaly remains one of the most in-demand defenders in Europe
Kalidou Koulibaly remains one of the most in-demand defenders in Europe (Image: Vincenzo Izzo/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Hoever named on bench

Former Liverpool defender Ki-Jana Hoever has been named on the bench for Wolves against Newcastle Unite this afternoon.

Dalglish wishes Van Dijk well

Sir Kenny Dalglish has sent his well wishes to Virgil van Dijk as the Liverpool star faces a prolonged spell on the sidelines.

The Reds confirmed last week that the Dutchman had sustained ACL ligament damage against Everton at the weekend.

As a result of the injury, the centre-back now faces the prospect of missing a significant chunk of the upcoming campaign.

He wrote in the Sunday Post:

“I wish Virgil a speedy recovery. He is a wonderful footballer and a first-class fella.”

Sir Kenny Dalglish is set be honoured with a lifetime achievement award
Sir Kenny Dalglish (Image: Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Firmino eyed by Real

Roberto Firmino would like to play for Real Madrid and is being targeted by Florentino Perez for a summer move, claim reports in Spain.

The 29-year-old Brazilian is one part of Liverpool’s deadly attacking trio with Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.

But the report claims Perez is preparing for a summer of 2021 full of signings and among his targets is Firmino.

Roberto Firmino has had his goalscoring return questioned
Roberto Firmino (Image: Getty Images)

Premier League could axe PPV system

The Premier League could be set to abandon their controversial pay-per-view service for non-televised fixtures.

Earlier this month, the top-flight announced they would be placing games that were not initially selected for TV available to supporters at a cost of £14.95 per fixture.

With the Premier League rolling on behind closed doors for the foreseeable future, fans faced the prospect of being effectively ‘locked out’ from watching their teams in action for matches that were not scheduled to be screened.

However, the division announced that additional non-televised fixtures in October would be made available via pay-per-view with Liverpool’s visit from Sheffield United on Saturday part of the bundle.

The idea, however, came under fire as supporters criticised the decision to charge an additional fee at a time when jobs are being lost nationwide because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Our man Paul Gorst has the full story HERE.

Sky TV commentators Rob Hawthorne and Alan Smith during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield on December 10, 2017.
Sky TV commentators Rob Hawthorne and Alan Smith during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Everton at Anfield on December 10, 2017. (Image: Photo by Visionhaus/Corbis via Getty Images)

Potter addresses White Liverpool links

Brighton boss Graham Potter has been addressing the rumours linking Ben White with Liverpool.

White signed a new deal upon returning to Brighton in the summer, after spending last season on loan at Leeds United.

Liverpool have scouted the Brighton defender over the last 12 months or so, but decided against making a move for him during the summer transfer window.

And Potter said on the recent reports:

“I think it is a bit like it was at the start of the season. All sorts of talk about him doing this, him doing that, and it is generated by outside, by outside of our control really.

“It is part of the football noise. The transfer window closed last week and we are already having conversations around transfer speculation. It’s just the way it is.

“I know he is level-headed enough to not let it affect him. I think at this level you have to know it is part of the territory.

“It is part of the job of being a footballer, while it’s part of what you have to deal with. Consistently all he has done is get on with his football.

“He has come into training, tried to be professional, tried his best, and tried to play football. I have no concerns about Ben.”

Leeds United loan star Ben White
Leeds United loan star Ben White (Image: Lewis Storey/Getty Images)

Liverpool told they should’ve moved for Zaha

Tony Cascarino has told Liverpool that they should have gone in for Wilfried Zaha over the summer.

The 27-year-old has been in fine form this season scoring five goals in six Premier League appearances.

Zaha was linked with a summer switch to Everton during the summer transfer window, but Cascarino believes Liverpool should have been in for the winger too.

He told talkSPORT:

“Roy Hodgson had put down his challenge to Wilf. Obviously the transfer window came and went and he didn’t get his desired move because he wanted a move. He openly admitted it.

“When he played certain games you thought ‘Wilf, you aren’t kidding anybody’. If you want to be at your very best you have to run your socks off and create problems because you are good enough.

“He’s one of those players who is good enough to play for a Champions League team. Easily. But he’s got to be in the right frame of mind.

“When he plays like he did yesterday and he causes havoc and he runs at teams and he’s nearly unplayable at times.

“I do think there’s an element that teams do actually feel… Wilf was very expensive and you are thinking he’s 28 years old and you are going to spend £40m, £50m, £60m for Wilf and then he’s 28, 29.

“He relies on pace. Wilf has got a great turn of foot and he can get past defenders.

“I was surprised Liverpool didn’t go in for him but then they went for (Diogo) Jota and got him for £40million and a younger player who has already stepped in.

“I thought Wilf could have played for Liverpool in the way they play. I thought he would have been superb in their setup. He gave Trent Alexander-Arnold a real hard game at Palace one afternoon.

“Klopp was on and on at Trent to try and defend. There was a penalty and he caused lots of problems for Liverpool.

“He’s good enough. I just feel he’s been priced out of the market slightly. Teams have looked at him and sometimes he’s on the fringes of a game when he shouldn’t be.

“I’ve never questioned Wilf’s ability. He’s a tremendous footballer.”

Wilfried Zaha has been linked with a move to Everton
Wilfried Zaha (Image: Getty Images)

'Liverpool send out ominous warning' - national media reaction

Liverpool followed up their away win at Ajax in midweek with three points at home to Sheffield United last night.

The 2-1 victory over the Blades takes the Reds back up to second place in Premier League at this stage.

The national media and other publications had plenty to say about the match, and our man Sean Bradbury has rounded-up the best of their reaction.

Over £100,000 raised by fans boycotting last night's pay-per-view match

You’ll have heard how many football fans are boycotting these additional pay-per-view matches in protest at these additional charges being imposed during these difficult times.

Our man Paul Gorst spoke to key figures from Liverpool supporters union Spirit of Shankly and Everton fans group Blue Union who believe the “exploitative” Premier League are losing their moral compass.

And over £100,000 has now been raised by fans who decided to donate the £14.95 pay-per-view fee to the Merseyside’s groundbreaking Fans Supporting Foodbanks initiative instead - brilliant effort by all involved.

MOTD pundits say it was wrong to award penalty against Liverpool

Match of the Day pundits Jermaine Jenas and Micah Richards have given their verdict on Fabinho and a VAR call during the clash against Sheffield United last night.

A big decision went against Liverpool as Fabinho was judged to have conceded a foul right on the line of the area - with referee Mike Dean eventually pointing to the spot after VAR action.

And Jenas argued in favour of Liverpool, stating it wasn’t a foul and questioning why VAR did not intervene to tell Dean to head to the touchline to rewatch the incident on the monitors.

He said:

“First and foremost, should Fabinho go for the ball? No, he should stand off.

“I don’t think it’s a penalty. I don’t think it’s a foul at all.

“It’s on the line, he gets some of the ball so it shouldn’t be given.

“It’s given by Mike Dean, he could have gone to the monitor but didn’t and VAR hasn’t seen it as a clear and obvious error and didn’t overturn it.”

While Richards admitted the Brazilian will make mistakes, he believes he is capable of doing the job.

He said:

“He’s played in that position before, yes he’ll make mistakes.

“He’s not going to replace Van Dijk, nobody can do that but I think he’ll be a good replacement for the team until he gets back.”

Jermaine Jenas
Jermaine Jenas (Image: (Visionhaus))

Premier League looking to change VAR rulings on offside

The Premier League are pushing for FIFA to allow a ‘margin of error’ on tight offside calls after a fresh number of controversies this season.

Mike Riley, head of the PGMOL, is also looking for feedback from the Dutch FA after the Eredivisie ignored FIFA’s zero tolerance approach and instead adopted a 10cm ‘linesman’s call’, the Mail reports.

The system sees the VAR judge offsides using two 5cm lines and, if they touch, the final decision remains with the on-field officials.

A similar idea was proposed by Riley to the Premier League earlier this year but they were then informed by FIFA that they would not support such an approach, after they took the reins on the law from the IFAB.

FIFA’s stance is that ‘offside is offside’ but there continues to be plenty of controversy surrounding the incidents, such as Jordan Henderson’s last-gasp winner for Liverpool against Everton ruled out with Sadio Mane’s shoulder being mere millimeters offside.

The Premier League has to propose any law changes before next Sunday for it to be discussed at the annual business meeting later this year - and any agreed changes would not come into effect until next season.

Offsides are expected to be on the IFAB agenda anyway, with Arsene Wenger, FIFA’s head of global football development, keen to bring in his own rule where a player is onside as long as any part of their body that can score is level with the last defender.

Annual rule changes from the IFAB and FIFA are customary, with one of the most recent being allowing for goal kicks to be passed to a player inside the area - which has led to a shift in tactics for many.

A view of the VAR system pitch side
A view of the VAR system pitch side (Image: (PA Wire/PA Images))

Upamecano eyed as Van Dijk replacement

Liverpool have identified RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano as their main transfer target as they look to fill the void left by the injury to Virgil van Dijk.

According to the Sunday World, sources in Germany claim Leipzig are expecting Liverpool to make a move to sign their centre-back in January, with an offer in excess of £40m hard for them to turn down.

Upamecano recently put pen to paper on a new contract with RB Leipzig, committing himself to the club until 2023.

The Reds are set to be without Van Dijk for the rest of this season after he damaged knee ligaments in a clash with Jordan Pickford last weekend.

Dayot Upamecano of RB Leipzig
Dayot Upamecano of RB Leipzig (Image: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images)

Sky Sports and BT Sport want to see pay-per-view service scrapped

Sky Sports and BT Sport would be happy to see the controversial pay-per-view service introduced by the Premier League scrapped.

The decision was made during the recent international break to make matches originally unselected for broadcast by the two companies available via pay-per-view at a cost of £14.95 per match.

However, the Mirror reports that neither broadcaster is making money from the amount being charged and are concerned about the hit their reputations are taking, with many accusations of being greedy.

The £14.95 price was decided upon by the Premier League and both Sky and BT are said to be furious with the decision, as they are only looking for their production costs to be covered.

Viewing figures are not being shared publicly, it’s reported that the numbers are said to be ‘mixed’.

A top Sky source has revealed that both companies would happily see the pay-per-view service binned as they continue to deal with the fallout.

He said:

“Sky is not happy to be involved in showing the pay-per-view games. We never thought it was a good idea and nothing’s changed since it started.

“It is damaging the reputation of Sky Sports to be linked to this scheme – and that feeling is shared at BT. Everyone here would prefer for it to stop.”

A spidercam at Anfield ahead of a Liverpool FC fixture to be broadcast live on TV
A spidercam at Anfield ahead of a Liverpool FC fixture to be broadcast live on TV

Post-Game Podcast

Diogo Jota’s second Liverpool goal in successive home Premier League games helped Jurgen Klopp’s side come from behind to beat Sheffield United.

Roberto Firmino also opened his Anfield account for the season to cancel out Sander Berge’s opener for the Blades after a controversial penalty decision via VAR.

Catch Klopp’s post-match press conference and the Liverpool ECHO’s LFC correspondent Paul Gorst with his take from inside Anfield, in the Post-Game podcast, while Guy Clarke hears from regular fan contributors Matt Whitty, Lauren Black, Ross Strachan, Steve Dawson, Owen Thomas, Hannah Pinnock and Mark Baker - as well as those in the Blood Red podcast Facebook group.

Enjoy.!

Klopp blasts Blades penalty

Jurgen Klopp has insisted the penalty that gave Sheffield United the lead at Anfield on Saturday should not have been awarded.

The visitors netted from a penalty - awarded via VAR - in the early stages of the clash but the Reds roared back to secure a hard-fought 2-1 victory.

The German said after the game:

“No foul. It’s now six games into the season and in three of them we have been on the wrong end of these kind of decisions.

“It’s not that we want to have any advantage, we just don’t want to have any disadvantage. That’s the situation now.

“We did very well at the start of the game, but the penalty we conceded gave Sheffield a proper boost. Until then they couldn’t really get at us, to be honest.

“Then we lost a bit of patience, we didn’t do exactly what we wanted to do.

“We scored a goal in our best attack when the formation was in its best place.”

Jurgen Klopp during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Sheffield United at Anfield on October 24, 2020
Jurgen Klopp during the Premier League match between Liverpool and Sheffield United at Anfield on October 24, 2020

Liverpool open 'talks' with Schalke over Kabak transfer

Liverpool have reportedly opened talks with Schalke about a £20million deal for Ozan Kabak.

According to the Mirror, the Reds told the Bundesliga club that they want to take the 20-year-old Turkish centre-back to Anfield in January.

The report claims that the move is due to the Reds losing Virgil van Dijk for the season with a torn cruciate ligament.

Kabak has been at Schalke for just over a year after arriving from Stuttgart for £13million when they triggered a clause in his contract and his side, according to the report, valued him at £40million before Covid-19.

Ozan Kabak of Turkey
Ozan Kabak of Turkey (Image: Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Further reading

In case you missed the rumours and speculation from yesterday catch up HERE and make sure you're signed up for our twice-daily Reds newsletters HERE

Liverpool analysis - Jordan Henderson comforts Jurgen Klopp as Joe Gomez grows

Jordan Henderson led the way for Liverpool as Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota scored in a hard-fought victory over Sheffield United - read Ian Doyle's analysis here

Jurgen Klopp (L) embraces Jordan Henderson (R) at the end of the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Sheffield United at Anfield

Morning Reds

Hello everyone and welcome to today’s Liverpool Live Blog