Liverpool leading Manchester United in the race to land 26-year-old Italian international

Manchester United behind Liverpool in race for Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella

Premier League rivals Liverpool are ‘leading’ Manchester United in the race to acquire the services of Inter Milan star Nicolo Barella, according to Football Insider (h/t Liverpool Echo).

The Red Devils and Jurgen Klopp’s team are monitoring the Italy international’s situation at the Nerazzurri. As things stand, the midfielder is looking to part ways with the Serie A giants next summer.

To that end, both the Old Trafford side and the Merseysiders have the 26-year-old on their radar ahead of the upcoming transfer window. But it is the Anfield side who are in pole position at the moment.

Manchester United behind Liverpool in race for Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella.
Liverpool are ahead of Manchester United in the race for Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella. (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

Barella moved to Inter in the summer of 2019. The Italian is tied down at the Nerazzurri until June 2026. In order to sell their prized asset, the Serie A giants will want £61 million.

The 26-year-old has gone from strength to strength at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza side. After winning Serie A under Antonio Conte in the 2020/21 season, the midfielder has made it to the Champions League semi-final under Simone Inzaghi in the current campaign. They have one foot in the final after beating AC Milan 2-0 in the first leg.

Liverpool’s engine room has left a lot to be desired this season. They seem to lack the energy and spark they have had in previous years under Klopp. The Anfield side also have the likes of James Milner, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain in the final months of their existing deals.

As for United, we bolstered the middle of the park with Casemiro and Christian Eriksen last summer. However, apart from the Brazilian and Danish nationals, Erik ten Hag has been unable to rely on other midfielders.

Fred, Scott McTominay and Donny van de Beek have been inconsistent during their time at the Old Trafford side. While Marcel Sabitzer has done well, the Austrian is on loan at the club from Bayern Munich.

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Thus, it would seemingly not hurt our prospects to have someone like Barella in the squad. But will United be able to pip Liverpool to Barella’s signature in the coming months? Only time will tell.