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Liverpool 'turn down chance to sign former Arne Slot defender'

Liverpool 'turn down chance to sign former Arne Slot defender'
© Reuters
Liverpool reportedly reject the chance to sign Feyenoord centre-back David Hancko, who is now on Leicester City's radar.

Liverpool have reportedly rejected the chance to sign a Feyenoord centre-back who made a name for himself under Arne Slot.

Slovakia's David Hancko was a cornerstone of Feyenoord's success during the reign of the soon-to-be Liverpool boss, establishing a reputation as a potent goal threat from the back.

The 26-year-old previously represented Fiorentina and Sparta Prague before joining the Rotterdam club in 2022, winning the Eredivisie title in his first season in the Netherlands.

From 93 appearances in a Feyenoord jersey, Hancko has contributed 11 goals and eight assists, including seven strikes and three assists from 48 games in a productive 2023-24 campaign.

The 6ft 2in defender - who is also a competent left-back - played every minute of his side's Champions League campaign, netting against Atletico Madrid, while also wearing the captain's armband in a Europa League clash with Roma.

David Hancko celebrates scoring for Slovakia in September 2023© Reuters

Leicester City 'weigh up move for Hancko after Liverpool decision'

Hancko is expected to be named in Slovakia's Euro 2024 squad, and on account of his exceptional work with Feyenoord, he signed a contract extension until 2028 back in February.

However, the defender's agent has opened the door to a move away from the Netherlands for his client in the near future, claiming that both Liverpool and Paris Saint-Germain have taken an interest in him.

Liverpool's desire to sign a new centre-back is no secret, but according to the Daily Mail, though, the Reds are not planning to move for the 26-year-old in the summer transfer window.

Instead, the Merseyside giants are apparently working to bolster their defence with younger players, and a promoted Premier League club could benefit from Liverpool turning their nose up to a deal.

Championship winners Leicester City are now believed to be weighing up an approach for the ex-Fiorentina defender, although their transfer plans are in limbo while Chelsea pursue head coach Enzo Maresca.

What younger defenders could Liverpool target?

Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe in action with Lille's Leny Yoro on December 17, 2023© Reuters

Twenty-six is certainly not ancient for any outfield player, but if Liverpool are insistent on scoping out younger targets, any centre-backs born before the turn of the millennium can likely forget about donning the Liverpool shirt next season.

A man eight years Hancko's junior in Leny Yoro - already a Lille mainstay at 18 years old - is thought to be at the top of Liverpool's defensive wishlist, and the French defender is expected to be on the move this summer after rejecting the chance to extend his deal beyond 2025.

However, the Reds appear to be third in line for Yoro's signature, as PSG have reportedly agreed a deal in principle with Lille, while the player himself is apparently holding out for a switch to Real Madrid.

Eintracht Frankfurt's Willian Pacho is rumoured to be an alternative option, but it would likely take a bid north of £50m to bring the 22-year-old to Anfield, while Arsenal are also in the picture.

Another Feyenoord man in Lutsharel Geertruida could arrive as a versatile option, capable of playing right-back or centre-back, but talk of a swoop for Sporting Lisbon's Goncalo Inacio has died down in recent weeks.

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Paris Saint-Germain's Kylian Mbappe in action with Lille's Leny Yoro on December 17, 2023
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