Liverpool are preparing to launch a £27 million bid for Barcelona forward Alexis Sanchez after he made it clear he would not sign for Manchester United, reports Metro.
Brendan Rodgers sent scouts from Anfield to watch Sanchez at the World Cup and they were left impressed after he inspired Chile to a 3-1 win against Australia in their opening group game.
Sanchez scored the opener for Chile and continued to run the Socceroos ragged as they got their World Cup campaign off to an impressive start. Despite Sanchez's good form, he looks likely to leave Barcelona this summer as Luis Enrique looks to reorganise the squad.
Officials at Anfield will be worried that more good performances from Sanchez at the World Cup could push his valuation even higher and are readying an imminent £27m bid.
The news of Liverpool's interest comes shortly after Sanchez reportedly told Manchester United officials not to bother chasing him this summer as he will not move to a club outside of the Champions League.
The Red Devils cannot even offer Europa League football after David Moyes guided them to a disastrous seventh-place finish in the Premier League last season. Louis van Gaal was hoping to add quality to the squad in an attempt to fast-track a return to Europe's elite but the Dutchman is so far finding it hard to attract top talent to Old Trafford.
Juventus were deemed favourites after those reports, but they are not willing to pay more than £16m for the Chilean forward.
As Liverpool look to add significant depth ahead of their return to the Champions League, they are willing to spend big and have the adequate finances to gazzump Juventus.
Sanchez had an impressive season for Barcelona, scoring 16-goals; second only to Lionel Messi. But Enrique wants to reinvigorate the squad with young talent and has already sold Cesc Fabregas to Chelsea to make way for fresh additions.
Offering more money, Liverpool would appear favourites for Sanchez but it is also believed that the Chilean is not convinced on the idea of setting up a life in England. Instead, he would enjoy playing under Antonio Conte in Italy where Champions League football is a virtual guarantee every season.
Rodgers can offer Sanchez a bigger wage packet and the chance to play with the likes of Luis Suarez but he still has a battle on his hands. Regardless, if Juventus do not match the £27 million Liverpool will offer, it is likely Sanchez's only chance to leave Barcelona will be a one-way road to Merseyside.