Both Manchester United and Liverpool are expected to accelerate their interest in Borussia Dortmund winger Marco Reus after news broke that the German club are targeting AS Roma’s Adem Ljajic as a potential replacement.
Dortmund are planning for Reus’s potential departure by stepping up their efforts to sign Ljajic - who trained with Manchester United on numerous occasions around 2009 but failed to secure a permanent deal with the Red Devils - according to the Express.
However the former Partizan starlet went on to flourish at Fiorentina, where he spent three years, before sealing a move to AS Roma last summer.
He has now entered the radar of Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp, who is mindful of the fact that Reus - who has been nothing short of sensational for BVB since arriving from Borussia Mönchengladbach in 2012 - could leave Signal Iduna Park if the club receives an offer which meets their valuation of the player.
Dortmund want £50m for Reus
The same report suggests that £50 million may be enough for either Manchester United or Liverpool, who are both lining up bids for the exciting Germany international, to complete a deal.
But whether either of the interested Premier League clubs would agree to pay that extraordinary figure is doubtful.
Manchester United have the funds available to finance such a deal, but are currently preoccupied with signing a world-class central midfielder and at least two new centre-backs.
Liverpool, on the other hand, recently completed the £20 million signing of Serbia international Lazar Markovic who, like Reus, plays from the left wing.
Reus injured until September
Another reason why both Manchester United and Liverpool might be a little wary of paying such a high price for Reus is because of his serious ankle injury, sustained on the eve of the World Cup finals.
That injury kept Reus out of the entire showpiece international tournament, which Germany won, and he is not expected to return to first-team action until September at the earliest.
It’s not expected to cause any long-term complications, but £50 million is obviously a huge price to pay for a player currently injured.
Watch: Marco Reus in action
Barcelona and Bayern Munich
Recent reports claim that both Barcelona and Bayern Munich are keen to sign the player - but Dortmund may prefer to sell to one of the interested Premier League clubs.
Klopp will insist that Reus cannot join domestic rivals Bayern Munich, having already lost the likes of Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski to the Germany giants over the past couple of seasons.
While Barcelona’s interest appears to have cooled since they completed the £75 million signing of Uruguay striker Luis Suarez from Liverpool.