Liverpool have made checks on Benfica winger Lazar Markovic ahead of the summer transfer window, according to reports.
The Daily Mail claims the Reds kept a close eye on the 20-year-old in the Portuguese top flight last season, but could pass on the player after opening talks with Xherdan Shaqiri.
Brendan Rodgers has also grown impatient over Adam Lallana, which suggests that if a deal fails to materialise for the Swiss international winger, Markovic could be next on the radar.
The former Partizan Belgrade has enjoyed an impressive first season in the Primera Liga, featuring on almost 50 occasions in all competitions as the club won the domestic title.
He’s also started to gain increased importance on the international stage, and now has 13 caps to his name for Serbia - as well as two goals, one of which came against Wales.
It’s not the first time Markovic has been linked with a move to Liverpool, with reports in The Daily Mirror just four days ago claiming the club would consider a £25million bid to bring the player to Merseyside.
The report went on to claim that Rodgers feared Chelsea would look to make a late move to sign the player, but his preference was Anfield rather than Stamford Bridge.
Jose Mourinho has already brought Cesc Fabregas into west London this summer, and the Blues have been linked with a handful of attacking targets, predominantly strikers.
Markovic would join a plethora of young talent if he were to join Chelsea, as well as compatriot Branislav Ivanovic, but in truth such a move looks unlikely.
The Reds already also have plenty of young players making their mark in the Premier League, with the likes of Raheem Sterling and Jordan Henderson shining in the club’s challenge for the title last term.
Despite faltering at the final hurdler, Liverpool showed that they now have a squad capable of challenging for major trophies - although the Champions League will be on another level next season.
With a few extra additions, Rodgers will be hoping his side can make their mark in Europe’s premier club competition, and Markovic is an exciting prospect not just for the 2014/15 campaign but years to come.
Do you think Markovic would be a good signing, Liverpool fans, or would you prefer Shaqiri? Have your say below...
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