Liverpool could reportedly use Takumi Minamino as a makeweight in a deal to land Sevilla forward Lucas Ocampos in the summer.

According to Spanish outlet La Razon, Sevilla are interested in signing Minamino from Liverpool and the Reds could use their interest to facilitate a move for Ocampos, who they are unwilling to pay Sevilla’s asking price for.

The report claims that Sevilla are looking for a team to pay Ocampos’ full €65m release clause, but Liverpool are hoping that adding Minamino to a potential deal could lower Sevilla’s demands.

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Liverpool had already been touted with interest in Ocampos, so this is an interesting update to the story ahead of the summer window. Minamino has had an impressive start to his loan spell with Southampton and that could give Liverpool a better chance of being able to sign Ocampos for a cheaper fee, with the Japan international having scored twice in his first three games for the Saints.

This means that Liverpool’s chances of signing Ocampos could hinge on Minamino’s form between now and the end of the campaign. The more goals Minamino scores for Southampton in the coming months, the higher Liverpool could potentially value him at. If Minamino ends up consistently producing top-quality performances for Southampton then Liverpool could use that as leverage in a deal for Ocampos, whereas that may not be the case if he struggles to make a huge impact and Sevilla are put off by his lack of consistency.

Ocampos has been producing some excellent performances in a Sevilla shirt this season to live up to his price tag. The forward is averaging a WhoScored rating of 7.05, with four goals and four assists in La Liga, to show just how good he has been for the Spanish side. At the age of 26, Ocampos could also be heading into his prime years, potentially making him more valuable as he continues to improve as a player.

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