The Liverpool and Gelson Martins links don’t seem to die, even after we are close to completing a deal for AS Roma winger Mohamed Salah.
Martins was actually seen as a replacement for the 24-year-old Salah as the deal with Roma seemed to be in the doldrums but A Bola, a Portuguese outlet claims that we are willing to stump up £44 million for the 22-year-old Sporting winger.
That in itself is a mind-boggling amount as Martins hasn’t been as great as Salah in the last couple of seasons. The 22-year-old Martins only scored six goals and provided nine assists in the Portuguese league, which isn’t as competitive as the Italian league.
The other reason why paying that much for the 22-year-old makes no sense is the fact that he has not played in the Premier League, something that Salah did do with Chelsea a few years ago.
The link might just fade away after the signing of Salah as we were seeing the Portuguese as a back-up for the Egyptian winger. Martins does have the ability but he is too great a risk to be taken, especially with the amount of money that is being asked for him.
The winger might still harp for a move away from his club but Sporting, just like every other Portuguese club, will be looking to make as much as they can from a player that has a lot of potential. We have seen the likes of Porto and Benfica mint millions through their player sales and Sporting would certainly be looking to join that brigade.
Maybe it was the link with Martins that got the Salah deal back to us as we seemed destined to lose out on a player that Klopp had earmarked at the start of the transfer window. We haven’t had the best of luck when signing players from Portugal recently, as fans will remember about Tiago Ilori and Raul Mereiles.
Keeping alternate targets is a good move for us, given how unlucky we have been in recent years. However, Martins should never have been an alternate for the experienced Salah and hopefully, the Portuguese would not be making Anfield his home next season.