Liverpool Could Use Divock Origi in Move for Ozan Kabak

Liverpool are eyeing a move for Ozan Kabak
Liverpool are eyeing a move for Ozan Kabak / Lars Baron/Getty Images

Liverpool have lodged their interest in Schalke defender Ozan Kabak ahead of the January transfer window, though they face fierce competition from Serie A leaders Milan.

The Reds' treatment room has been at full capacity this season with a number of key players injured. Both Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez are currently ruled out, while Joel Matip has also endured spells on the sidelines in recent months.

Kabak is wanted by a number of European giants
Kabak is wanted by a number of European giants / Pool/Getty Images

Klopp has been forced to shuffle his pack with midfielder Fabinho slotting in at centre-back, while youngsters Nathaniel Phillips and Rhys Williams have also been called upon at times.

With the January transfer window fast upon us, Klopp is said to have identified 'five or six' targets as he seeks to bring in defensive reinforcements, and The Telegraph report that Schalke defender Ozan Kabak is one of those on the club's radar.

Schalke manager Huub Stevens is said to be aware of Liverpool's interest and is bracing himself for bids for the talented youngster. Should the Reds decide to submit a bid for the Turkey international, Divock Origi is already being touted as a potential makeweight in the deal.

Origi has been a marginal figure this season at Liverpool
Origi has been a marginal figure this season at Liverpool / Pool/Getty Images

Origi, though popular among fans and in the dressing room at Anfield, has made little impact on the first team since the 2018/19 season when he scored vital goals against Everton, Barcelona and Tottenham.

However, the Merseysiders aren't the only party interested in Kabak, with Serie A side Milan also said to be keen on the youngster.

In an interview with MilanNews, intermediary Gaetano Di Caro confirmed that the Rossoneri are long time admirers of Kabak, replying when asked of Milan's interest: “From what I understand, I have spoken in person with the Schalke general manager for some market surveys From what emerges, he has been talking to Milan for a long time.

Klopp is seeking cover for his injured centre-backs
Klopp is seeking cover for his injured centre-backs / Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

"Here they give for certain that Milan are already very close to Kabak. The Rossoneri have been looking for him for a long time.

"Milan were already very close to Kabak when Stuttgart were relegated, he did not go to Milan because the then sporting director of the Germans moved to Schalke and took his I also understand that Maldini and Massara have always been highly praised even by the player, they were the only ones who gave the feeling of wanting him at all costs."

He went on to add that, should Milan wish to commit to a deal, they would be looking at a figure around the €25m mark, though there may be further interest from Serie A on the horizon.

"In the summer Schalke had to give a price, there was even talk of 30 million plus bonuses, they didn't want to sell it, he added. "Massara and Maldini know how to do it, they played a bit lower. I think that given the current financial and sporting situation, Schalke will give it away for about 23/25 million.

"Kabak through his teammate Kutucu, whom I know very well, admitted that Milan was very sensitive in conveying the desire to take him. Juve cannot undermine Milan at this moment."