Liverpool urged to beat Man Utd to Dayot Upamecano transfer by securing January deal

Liverpool should beat other clubs to the signing of Dayot Upamecano in January if they cannot cope without Virgil van Dijk, according to former West Ham goalkeeper Shaka Hislop. Van Dijk is set to miss the rest of the season with an anterior cruciate knee ligament injury. Liverpool are also currently without Joel Matip and Fabinho, with the latter suffering a hamstring problem in the 2-0 Champions League win over FC Midtjylland on Tuesday.

RB Leipzig defender Upamecano has attracted interest from a host of Europe’s top clubs.

Manchester United were interested in the summer and reports say they will go in for the France international at the end of this season.

But Hislop says Liverpool should attempt to sign the 22-year-old in the winter transfer window if their injury situation has not improved.

“Right now, let’s see how Liverpool cope without Van Dijk,” Hislop told ESPN FC.

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“As you mentioned, the league is wide open and maybe they have enough to cope, certainly we will know by January. If not, sign him.

“I think Upamecano is an incredible talent and many big clubs will be chasing him.

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“If you can get yourself to the head of the queue in January, it might be worth your while.

“But who knows, that depends on what you get him for and what that release clause is.

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Upamecano comes up against United tonight in the Champions League at Old Trafford.

But United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer refused to comment on links with the centre-back.

“There are always rumours and speculation about good players for Manchester United,” Solskjaer said.

“I’ve always tried to respect that they are players for other teams and don’t want to comment on every player that we are linked to but since he’s playing against us tomorrow I know he’s a very good player so we can see him close up.”

Meanwhile, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has praised Rhys Williams after the 19-year-old replaced Fabinho in the first half on Tuesday.

“[Losing Fabinho is] exactly the last thing that we needed,” Klopp said.

“I don’t know. He felt his hamstring and that is not good.

“He said ‘I could have played on but no sprints any more’. That is not good. We shall see.”

“Losing Fabinho in the first half, Rhys Williams he’s only 19-years old and I think he’s played more Champions League games than Premier League games – that’s rare.

“We’re doing really well but it’s a shock for a team because now we have to sort that injury.

“It was a tough night. It’s a bit like in a marriage, there are good and bad times.

“It’s not a bad time but it’s a tricky time. 100 per cent we have to stick together and fight harder and that’s what the boys did tonight.”

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