Red Star Belgrade have accepted a £5.1million bid from Liverpool for midfielder Marko Grujic – but his father has threatened to scupper the deal.
The talented 19-year-old was expected join the club in January before being loaned back to the Serbian outfit for the remainder of the season.
A statement on Red Star’s website said: “The board considered the offer and unanimously accepted the offer of the English giants. Liverpool will pay the money immediately, and the player would stay in Red Star until 01/07/2016.”
But Grujic’s father, Goran, says his son is being forced into the move because Red Star are in desperate need of the money.
Goran added that he is in possession of his son’s passport and will not let him travel to England.
“I won’t allow them to destroy my boy,” Goran told Serbian paper Blic.
“I’m speaking about people who are in charge of the club [Red Star Belgrade]. Everyone turned their back on them, as they’ve spent all the money the club has had, and they see a solution in Marko’s transfer. That’s why there’s so much pressure on him. Ten times per day they are calling him by phone, urging him to sign a contract.
“There are [their] stories in Serbian media, like ‘Gerrard’s No 8 is waiting for him’, or ‘Klopp called him by phone’, ‘millions here, millions there’.”
He added: “I mean, which club is willing to pay six million Euros, and then to say ‘Look, kid, come when you want’? Nope, if Liverpool FC is seriously counting on him, they’ll tell him ‘Start of training camp in January on this day, at that hour, we’re expecting you’. And, what kind of combination is that?
“The club is paying for him seven million Euros, but then leave him on loan and that loan costs one million? Really, I’m starting to think I should call.
“All I can say is that the passports are with me, and I can guarantee that Marko is not leaving, he’s not going anywhere.
“He became world champion, he’s on his way to win a title with Red Star, it’s logical that his price will be bigger in summer 2016. But, there are so many people that want this transfer to go earlier, to get money. All of this is packaged as a beautiful strawberries and cream for Marko because she was still a child. But the reality is different.
“I know that coach Miodrag Bozovic has respect for my son, but I told director Zvezdan Terzic openly – leave my kid alone. And, as of Liverpool’s offer, I’m sure there will be bigger than this one. Let him win the title with Red Star first.”