Liverpool transfer chief Julian Ward can repeat Michael Edwards tactic with Gavi deal

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Liverpool will have to find a strong replacement for Michael Edwards at the end of the season when the transfer guru will leave the club. Barcelona star Gavi has long been on the Reds radar and a summer move could be on the cards.

Liverpool have been strongly linked with a move for Barcelona whizkid Gavi, who has a reported release clause of £42million. But the first port of business at Anfield will be finding someone to replace Edwards.

The sporting director will leave his role at the end of the season in a serious blow to the Reds and their transfer plans. Julian Ward, his second in command, will take over his duties – and he has an almighty task on his hands.

But he has learnt from one of the best and knows all of his tricks – including one of his favourites – triggering release clauses. Edwards did the same thing with Naby Keita and Ibrahima Konate, who were both signed from RB Leipzig.

With Barcelona desperately trying to tie Gavi to a new contract to increase his current release clause, Liverpool are running out of time to sign him. The 17-year-old has been incredible this season for Los Cules.

The teenager has made 39 appearances this season for Barca, scoring twice and making six assists. The latest came against Levante in a 3-2 win where fellow wonderkid Pedri scored.

Xavi is confident he can get Gavi to pen a new contract at the Nou Camp. The similarities between the two – not just with their names. The passing qualities are there, they just need to be nurtured – and what better coach than one of the best technicians of all time?

However, Barcelona’s financial situation has forced them to offer lower deals than usual and that is something that Liverpool can take advantage of. According to El Nacional, they have already informed his entourage of their intentions this summer.

Barca might be forced to sell if a new deal cannot be clinched this summer with the youngster entering the final year of his contract. That would be totally taken out of their hands if Liverpool trigger Gavi’s £42m release clause.

As for Ward, he would most likely know all about the midfielder having been initially appointed at Liverpool as European scouting manager in Spain and Portugal from 2012. While he has promoted to Edwards’ second in command last year, if Ward can fulfil the role awaiting him anywhere near as good as his boss – that spells good news for Liverpool.

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