Sat. Oct 31st, 2020

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Manchester United and Liverpool already circling around Dayot Upamecano with release clause set to drop to just £36.5m

2 min read
Man Utd and Liverpool already circling around Dayot Upamecano with release clause set to drop to just £36.5m
The centre-back’s new deal included a buyout clause that activates next summer (Picture: Getty)

Manchester United and Liverpool will go head-to-head to sign RB Leipzig’s highly rated centre-back Dayot Upamecano next summer when his bargain release clause activates, according to reports.

The Frenchman was being chased by a host of top clubs earlier this summer after another excellent campaign in both the Bundesliga and Champions League, though surprisingly opted to sign a new contract with Leipzig.

His old deal had a £54million release and was due to expire next summer, when he would have been available for free, but no clubs paid up and he agreed to extend his stay until 2023.

RB Leipzig's Dayot Upamecano France v Croatia
Upamecano is regarded as one of Europe’s best centre-back prospects (Picture: Getty)

However, German publication Sport BILD have now revealed that Upamecano’s new contract also includes a release clause which will active during next summer’s transfer window.

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When it does, suitors will be able to sign the 21-year-old for just €40m (£36.5m) – a fee that marks him out as one of the most enticing players on the market next year and ensures Leipzig still get a decent fee for a player who otherwise would have been leaving on a free transfer.

The report claims Liverpool and United are both very interested in signing Upamecano when the clause becomes active, and they may need to start their respective charm offensives now to land him.

Manchester City have also been credited with an interest, though that move seems highly unlikely given that they spent over £100m to bring Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake to the Etihad.

Leipzig are so convinced that Upamecano will not remain at the club beyond next summer they have already started planning for life after the Frenchman, with Josko Gvardiol – who was bought from Dinamo Zagreb and immediately loaned back to the Croatian club this summer – earmarked as his successor.

Manchester United v Tottenham Hotspur - Premier League
United were a shambles at the back against Spurs and need reinforcements (Picture: Getty)

United’s defensive issues are well publicised, shipping six goals at the weekend against Tottenham, and Upamecano could be the pacey, physical, ball-playing centre-back they have been missing.

While Liverpool’s need for a centre-back is less pressing, they similarly conceded seven goals against Aston Villa and there are doubts over both Joe Gomez and Joel Matip as long-term partners for Virgil van Dijk in the backline.

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