Liverpool and Chelsea have just 10 days in which to complete a potential deal if either wants to sign Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer.
Aubameyang has been heavily tipped to leave the Bundesliga side if the right offer is received, but any club wishing to prise him away will have to work fast as well as paying big.
The European transfer won’t close until the end of August, but the London Evening Standard has repeated the suggestion, rumoured once already this summer, that Dortmund will only sanction a transfer if the negotiations are satisfactorily wrapped up by 24th July.
That is the date that Peter Bosz’s team will begin pre-season at a training camp in Switzerland and if Aubameyang is still a Dortmund player by that time the club will insist that he remains one, rather than allow him to leave after and limit their own window in which to sign a replacement.
Chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke admitted in June that Dortmund would consider any bid of €70m (£61.6m), but the club are not actively looking to sell and the Standard’s report notes that claims Chelsea were offered the player for £70m earlier this week are ‘wide of the mark’.
Liverpool are regularly linked with the Gabonese international. The Dortmund connection with Jurgen Klopp is an obvious one, with Aubameyang originally joining BVB under Klopp’s management, but there have been rumours that their relationship wasn’t always the best.
AC Milan, where Aubameyang began his career but never made an impact at first-team level, are another club said to be hunt as they look to continue their heavy summer recruitment.
But it looks to be too late for a possible move to the Chinese Super League. Tianjin Quanjian have been heavily linked with a move for the 28-year-old as well, but with the mid-season transfer window in China closing on 14th July there simply isn’t the time for any deal to happen.