Liverpool came close to signing Josip Ilicic in August - report

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The Fiorentina man was reportedly Anfield-bound but Paulo Sousa prevented the deal from happening.

Liverpool were close to the signing of gifted Fiorentina playmaker Josip ilicic in August according to Gazzetta dello Sport, but Viola manager Paulo Sousa reportedly blocked the move at the 11th hour.

The Anfield outfit had a progressive summer in the transfer market, with the likes of Christian Benteke, Roberto Firmino and Nathaniel Clyne heading to the Merseyside team.

However, if the latest reports in Italy are to be believed, they could well have had another attacking new face in Jurgen Klopp’s current squad.

Gazzetta dello Sport claim that Fiorentina were initially ready to part company with Ilicic, with a deal in place to take the gifted former Palermo midfielder to England.

However, with new manager Sousa still assessing the squad that he had inherited from Vincenzo Montella, the Portuguese trainer refused to allow Ilicic to move to the Reds.

The decision has been vindicated by the Slovakia international’s stellar form this season for the Serie A table-toppers, with Ilicic playing a decisive role in the Stadio Artemio Franchi side’s starting XI.

Liverpool have previously recruited well from the Italian market, with Philippe Coutinho’s £7 million addition from Inter their best piece of business in the recent memory.

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