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Liverpool have been linked with a transfer raid for Lille defender Sven Botman as they look to bolster their squad. The Reds are without Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip as they look to defend their Premier League title.
Botman joined Lille from Ajax in the summer but is already being looked at by Jurgen Klopp, according to reports.
Lille would be willing to sell Botman this month for less than £20million, having paid just £7m to sign him a few months ago, due to financial problems.
Liverpool stars Van Dijk and Gini Wijnaldum will be aware of his talents after the defender was called into the Holland squad in November.
Former Southampton defender Jose Fonte believes Botman is the best defender he has ever played with.
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The Squawka Football Twitter account posted an image of Botman accompanied by the caption: “[Fonte] could be losing another centre-back partner to the Premier League soon.”
That was after Gabriel joined Arsenal from Lille in the summer transfer window.
Fonte replied: “Another one….Always happy to help.”
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According to Duncan Castles, speaking on the Transfer Window podcast, Fonte believes Botman is the best ever defender he has played alongside.
Castles said of Botman: “One other thing I think will be interesting to Liverpool supporters is that Botman plays alongside veteran Portugal defender Jose Fonte at Lille this season.
“Fonte has played with an array of top-class centre-backs in his career including Virgil van Dijk, Toby Alderweireld, Pepe in the Portuguese national team and Gabriel last season who is now at Arsenal.
“From what I understand of Fonte’s impression of Botman, he thinks he’s the best of all of them.
“He describes him as a machine and a man who doesn’t make mistakes and also indicates that for a young player playing alongside an experienced professional, he’s very open to learning and taking instruction and improving his game.
“These are attributes you look for in a signing and are the kind of attributes Liverpool have been very focused on when they’ve recruited players in the past.
“You can see why they’re having conversations there and you can see from the cost perspective why it seems to be a good potential fit for that January deal.”
Liverpool return to action against Southampton on Monday in the Premier League (8pm).
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