Celtic star could hold the key to Liverpool's next £55m transfer Arne Slot knows very well

Teun Koopmeiners and Arne Slot during their time together at AZ Alkmaar
-Credit: (Image: Ed van de Pol/Soccrates/Getty Images)

Atalanta have made a move to sign Celtic midfielder Matt O'Riley and that could open the door for Liverpool to make an approach for Dutch international midfielder Teun Koopmeiners.

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has claimed that the Europa League champions have submitted a formal proposal to sign the Danish international from last season's Scottish Premiership winners, although they are set to face competition from a number of Premier League clubs.

Negotiations remain ongoing, as the Italian side look to push through a deal for the 23-year-old who scored 19 goals and registered 18 assists in all competitions for Celtic last season.

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Should they be successful in that bid, it will allow Atalanta to move on Koopmeiners, who is attracting interest from Liverpool, as well as Juventus.

The 26-year-old, who can play anywhere across attacking midfield, scored 15 goals in all competitions last season and was a key part of the Atalanta side who beat the Reds en route to winning last season's Europa League.

Injury ruled him out of the Netherlands squad for this summer's EURO 2024 but he is expected to be fit for the new season. He has decided he wants a new challenge and Atalanta are said to be holding out for a £55 million fee for a player they signed for around £10m from AZ Alkmaar three years ago.

Reports in Italy at the weekend claimed Liverpool were the frontrunners for his signature, and having played under new Liverpool boss Arne Slot in Alkmaar, he could play a key role in the Reds' rebuild this season.

However, he is the priority target of new Juventus manager Thiago Motta and Liverpool may need to move quickly to beat the Italian giants to his signature.