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Leipzig emerge as likely destination for Liverpool & Brighton target Assan Ouedraogo

Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig have emerged as favourites to land Liverpool and Brighton & Hove Albion target Assan Ouedraogo, according to German news outlet Sport Bild.

The 17-year-old has caught the attention of several European heavyweights with his eye-catching performances for Schalke 04 in the German second division.

Ouedraogo has established himself as an integral member of the Schalke first-team set-up, racking up nine Bundesliga 2 appearances while contributing a goal.

He was also a prominent part of the German under-17 side that emerged victorious in the European Championship tournament at the beginning of the year.

After making his debut for Schalke in the 5-3 defeat to Hamburger SV at the start of the season, Ouedraogo became the youngest player in the history of the club.

He has attracted attention from a host of Premier League clubs, including Liverpool, Brighton & Hove Albion and Everton, who are giving a lot of thought to triggering his €20 million release clause.

However, the Premier League trio have been dealt a massive blow in the race for the exciting teenager amid reports his Bundesliga release clause is significantly lower, with Leipzig now considered the front-runners.

Following the departure of Max Eberl, Rouven Schroder took over as Leipzig’s sporting director. 

Schroder had previously served as manager of Schalke until October 2022 and drafted Ouedraogo’s professional contract in what was essentially his last official act at the club.

It has now been reported that there is a €7m release clause that only applies to Bundesliga clubs, and Leipzig plans to intensify their efforts to lure the youngster to the Red Bull Arena.

Ouedraogo will turn 18 in May 2024, at which point his existing development contract will automatically be converted into a professional agreement, activating his release clause.

The latest development is a major setback for Schalke, who are crumbling under the pressure of their piling debts and had hoped to use the proceeds from Ouedraogo’s departure to ease their financial troubles.

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