Liverpool and Chelsea are both weighing up bids for Southampton midfielder Romeo Lavia, according to The Times reporter Paul Hirst.
The usually reliable journalist claims that, despite the Saints’ relegation to the Championship, they will still hold out for a fee in the region of £40m.
Manchester City do have a buyback option on Lavia, having sold him for £12.5m last summer, but that clause only comes into effect next year and it is believed they will not make an offer for the Belgian before then.
Lavia is still only 19 years of age, and he received his first senior international cap just a couple of months ago but he is a player that is highly regarded by scouts.
Liverpool are targeting a number of midfielders
In addition to Lavia, the Reds are reportedly closing in on a deal to sign Brighton’s Alexis Mac Allister, while the likes of Chelsea’s Mason Mount, Bayern Munich’s Ryan Gravenberch and Sporting Lisbon’s Manuel Ugarte have also been mentioned as possible targets.
With vice-captain James Milner, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Naby Keita all leaving, it is expected that more than one central midfield player will be purchased in the coming weeks to compensate for the number of departures.