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Liverpool 'cool interest in Brighton & Hove Albion boss Roberto De Zerbi'

Liverpool 'cool interest in Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi'
© Reuters
Brighton & Hove Albion head coach Roberto De Zerbi is not one of the leading candidates to replace Jurgen Klopp as Liverpool manager, according to a report.

Brighton & Hove Albion head coach Roberto De Zerbi is not one of the leading candidates to replace Jurgen Klopp as Liverpool manager, according to a report.

The 44-year-old is currently one of the most sought-after coaches in world football and has been strongly tipped to succeed Klopp at Anfield in recent months.

Liverpool will part ways with Klopp at the end of the season and are now searching for alternatives to their former first-choice managerial target Xabi Alonso, who announced last week that that he will be staying at Bundesliga leaders Bayer Leverkusen.

De Zerbi succeeded Graham Potter as Brighton boss in September 2022 and secured European football for the first time in the club's history last season courtesy of a sixth-placed finish in the Premier League.

The Italian led the Seagulls to the last 16 of the Europa League earlier this term, and his side are still challenging for a top-seven finish in the Premier League, sitting ninth at present and only two points behind the European positions.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Roberto De Zerbi before the match on March 7, 2024© Reuters

Recent reports have suggested that De Zerbi was viewed by Liverpool as a primary alternative to Alonso, but Sky Sports News now claims that the Brighton boss is 'not their focus' as the Reds have turned their attention to other candidates.

It is thought that Liverpool will consider stepping up their interest in Sporting Lisbon's highly-rated head coach Ruben Amorim, who has also attracted interest from Barcelona.

De Zerbi remains a target for Bayern Munich, though, with Sky Deutschland claiming that both the Italian and Julian Nagelsmann are the top-two candidates to succeed Thomas Tuchel this summer.

The report states that Bayern sporting director Max Eberl holds a 'high opinion' of De Zerbi, who allegedly possesses a release clause valued between €10m (£8.5m) and €15m (£12.8m) in his Seagulls contract that expires in 2026.

Brighton & Hove Albion manager Roberto De Zerbi on February 18, 2024© Reuters

De Zerbi's Brighton future in doubt?

After refusing to commit his long-term future to Brighton last weekend, prior to a 2-1 defeat at Liverpool in the Premier League, De Zerbi has since insisted that he is not focused on speculation.

"You are asking me a lot of times if I am leaving, but I am still proud to be coach at Brighton," De Zerbi told reporters on Tuesday.

"I know I am really lucky to work with these players, to work with this club. I'd like to compete with a full squad, but I try to play with the players available and I think they are enough."

"[My future is] not a problem, it's a part of my work," De Zerbi added. "At the moment I want to be focused and to keep my eyes on the target we have. I have the contract at the moment. The focus is on the pitch.

"I'm very relaxed. The problems are the injured players and the preparations for the next game. These are the problems not the contract or my future."

De Zerbi is currently preparing his Brighton side for a trip to the Gtech Community Stadium to face Brentford in the Premier League on Wednesday night.

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Sporting Lisbon coach Ruben Amorim before the match on October 5, 2023
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