Liverpool set to lead bidding war for £30 million new Torres partner

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Juventus have placed Real Madrid flop Karim Benzema at the top of their shopping list, according to reports.

The France striker has failed to live up to expectations since his €35 million to the Bernabeu in 2009 and has since been linked with a move to Liverpool.

But Roy Hodgson will have to battle for his signature with Italian Juve giants who - according to Tuttosport - are prepared to spend big to land the 22-year-old.

However, earlier this month Benzema's agent shot down speculation linking him with Liverpool, Juve and Manchester United - saying that his client would continue to fight for his place in Madrid.

"The future of Karim Benzema will be at Real Madrid," Karim Djaziri told

"Are Juventus, Manchester United and Liverpool close to a deal? I categorically deny these rumours.

"He is a Real Madrid player and will remain a Real Madrid player."

A big-money battle for Benzema could represent Liverpool owners NESV fulfilling the promise to Hodgson and the Anfield faithful that they would fight with Europe's top clubs for high profile players.

"We have got to make certain that if we go out and spend £20m, we are getting a £20m player," Hodgson said a fortnight ago.

"We want to be attracting the players that Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter are chasing. It would be nice to think that we can shop at a high level."

Liverpool have also been linked with January moves for Benfica hitman Oscar Cardozo and Bayern Munich ace Mario Gomez as NESV look to splash the cash to bring new faces to Anfield.


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