Liverpool’s long-standing interest in Athletic Bilbao’s forward, Nico Williams, gains momentum as contract talks between the player and the La Liga side encounter significant hurdles, potentially steering Williams towards an alternative destination.
The 21-year-old has been on Liverpool’s radar for an extended period, and with talks hitting an impasse at Bilbao, a new direction seems likely for the promising forward. Follow your favourite Premier League team with attractive football betting odds from Nextbet.
Reports from El Correo indicate a breakdown in negotiations, citing a halt in discussions regarding Williams’ contract extension, primarily revolving around the player’s preferences. Williams seeks a short-term contract with a reasonable release clause, aiming for greater flexibility in shaping his future.
Previously, Liverpool showed interest in triggering Williams’ €88 million (£76m) release clause in 2019, as reported by claims from Spain. However, no club has come forward to meet Bilbao’s substantial valuation.
In a warning to Bilbao, Williams’ agent, Félix Tainta, highlighted the impending contract expiry, stating, *”In a few months the contract ends, let’s not forget.”* He underscored the absence of a definitive offer from either party, emphasizing the player’s stance and the club’s awareness of his desires.
With Williams’ contract set to expire on June 30, 2024, Liverpool stands poised to exploit this situation by potentially securing a pre-contract agreement, allowing them to sign him on a free transfer in the upcoming summer.
FIFA regulations enable clubs to engage in negotiations with players in the final six months of their contracts. Just as other players like Thiago Alcantara, Joel Matip, and Adrian are free to explore future options in the winter transfer window, Liverpool too can initiate talks with Williams.
According to FIFA’s Rule 18.3 on contractual stability between players and clubs, negotiations can proceed if a player’s contract is due to expire within six months, granting freedom to discuss terms with potential suitors.
As January approaches and if Bilbao fails to meet Williams’ demands, the talented forward will have the liberty to engage in talks with Liverpool or any other interested club, potentially paving the way for a significant move in the upcoming transfer window. Get the latest updates from the Premier League only on Nextbet Sports.