Soccer NewsMonday 23rd April 2018

Lionel Messi fighting to keep Liverpool transfer target at Barcelona

Lionel Messi fighting to keep Liverpool transfer target at Barcelona

Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi is reportedly not keen on his club allowing goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen to leave amid rumours linking him with Liverpool.

The Dutchman has only been a backup to Marc-Andre ter Stegen during his time at Barca so far, but impressed enough at previous club Ajax to get him onto the Reds’ radar.

MORE: Liverpool transfer blow: Real Madrid confident of securing €60million transfer

Mundo Deportivo (with translation from Sport Witness) have continued to link Cillessen with Liverpool as they look in need of a new goalkeeper, but Don Balon claim Messi is pushing for Barcelona to keep hold of him.

It remains to be seen if that will be enough to persuade the Catalan giants to fight hard to keep hold of a backup player, but Sport Witness also cite reports from Sport that the man himself is content with life at his current club.

Cillessen could surely command the no.1 spot at Anfield given Jurgen Klopp’s rotation between Simon Mignolet and Loris Karius this season, even if the latter has improved of late and made himself first choice.

jasper cillessen barcelona
Jasper Cillessen is a rumoured transfer target for Liverpool

Liverpool need to ensure they are rock-solid at the back next season as their attack has been as good as any in Europe this term, with their poor form in defence letting them down in the first half of the season in particular.

A new goalkeeper and defender could go a long way for Liverpool, and interest in Cillessen would make sense given his bench-warmer role at the Nou Camp.

Still, a good backup ‘keeper is a blessing and it seems Messi knows it as he urges his club not to part with the 28-year-old at this stage.

Comment