Brendan Rodgers is on the hunt for another goalkeeper to bolster his ranks, with Fiorentina’s Neto the latest player to enter the discussion.
Former Barcelona shot stopper Victor Valdes had appeared the favourite to join the Reds, whilst Real Madrid’s Iker Casillas had also been mentioned as an option.
Valdes, however, has begun training with Manchester United as an Anfield move has fallen by the wayside, while fellow Spaniard Casillas is an expensive proposition.
This has led Liverpool to Neto, who the Reds look to have come across at exactly the right time.
The 25-year-old’s Viola contract expires next summer and talks over an extension have stalled due to a discrepancy over wages.
According to Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano, Neto earns in the region of £10,000 per week on his current terms at the Artemio Franchi and is looking for a raise.
Fiorentina are said to be offering the Brazilian just under £20,000 per week, though the player and his agents have requested £20,000 plus bonuses at minimum.
Looking at these figures, an incredible bargain could be shaping up for Liverpool. Romano claims Neto would be comfortable staying in Florence, but his future remains uncertain with ‘arm wrestling’ going on over a new deal.
If Liverpool were to offer Neto the £20,000 plus per week he is requesting from Fiorentina, the Brazilian would still be one of, if not the, lowest-paid players in the squad.
Consider that first-choice goalkeeper Simon Mignolet earns in the region of £60,000 per week and the full picture becomes clear – Neto would be a steal.
With such a manageable salary he’d be a low-risk investment, serving the purpose of challenging Mignolet for the no. 1 role at a fraction of the Belgian’s cost.
Neto has plenty of upside as a 25-year-old and the talent to usurp Mignolet in goal at Anfield, so is a player well worth investing in.
Pouncing on the situation could yield a significant return for Liverpool down the road, should they force the issue with Fiorentina holding firm on the limits of what they’re willing to pay the Brazilian.