Why was Alexis Mac Allister so cheap? How Liverpool managed to pull off stunning bargain deal
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Liverpool are set to announce the signing of Brighton star Alexis Mac Allister for a fee of just £35 million, according to reports.
The Seagulls midfielder is preparing to depart the Amex Stadium after a four-and-a-half-year stint at the club, during which he has developed into one of the Premier League's top midfielders.
At 24 years of age, Mac Allister still has his prime years ahead of him - making his impending move to Anfield all the more intriguing.
His signing will be the first step to rebuilding Liverpool's midfield, with the club having released several players in that area of the pitch.
And the Reds, as per Fabrizio Romano, have managed to secure him for a much lower fee than was initially believed to be possible, with initial reports claiming that deal could be worth up to £60 million.
Here is how the club got the move agreed for £25 million less than that figure.
How Liverpool sealed 'cheap' Mac Allister deal
Around 15 years ago, a player moving clubs for £35 million would represent one of the biggest deals in football. It shows just how much the market has progressed that such a deal for a top star is now considered a bargain.
But a bargain is exactly what Mac Allister is for Jurgen Klopp's side - if he can reproduce the form he showed with Brighton and Argentina, and then take his game to new heights.
The 24-year-old's contract at the Amex Stadium was originally due to expire this summer, which would have allowed him to leave on a free transfer.
However, he agreed a new deal in October to keep him at the Seagulls until 2025, with the option of an extra year's extension held by the club.
A release clause was included in the contract, allowing Mac Allister to leave if another club triggered it.
After the final day of the season, Brighton boss Roberto De Zerbi stated (via BBC Sport) it was likely that the Argentinian, and team-mate Moises Caicedo, would depart the Seagulls this summer.
The signing of Mac Allister is set to be first deal completed under new Liverpool sporting director Jorg Schmadtke. He replaced the outgoing Julian Ward on June 1, and with the Reds' initial interest in the player being reported in May, it is likely that the groundwork for the deal was completed by the German's predecessor.