Liverpool have been told to pay £21m if they want to sign Benfica star Nicolas Gaitan this summer, reports The Mail.
The centre-back has been linked with a move to the Premier League for several years now, but it was Manchester United, not Liverpool, who appeared favourites to land his signature.
However, Brendan Rodgers is hoping to get the jump on his rivals in the upcoming transfer window by making an early move.
They have been told that it will cost no less than £21m to take him away from the Estadio de Luz, leaving Rodgers with a big decision to make.
Gaitan, 27, has been a sensation during his time in Portugal and has become a key player for the current championship winning squad.
Lack of pedigree
He cost Benfica just £6m to sign from Boca Juniors in 2010 and they are now ready to cash in to make a significant profit on what was then their third most expensive signing.
But while his legacy at Benfica is sealed, the Argentinian is yet to prove himself on the international stage. In fact, he has only accumulated nine caps in his career so far and failed to make the squad for last summer's World Cup.
There is also a big concern that Gaitan would come to the Premier League with no experience in one of Europe's top five divisions.
A number of stars have arrived from Portugal and failed to replicate their success in the English game. With so much money at stake and much to prove after some unsuccessful purchase last summer, Rodgers may be unwilling to risk such a big sum.
Manchester United interest
Rodgers may also have to compete with Manchester United for Gaitan as the Red Devils have long been linked with a move for him.
There were reports earlier this week that Louis van Gaal was preparing to use Old Trafford outcast Nani, who has been on loan with Sporting Lisbon this past season, in a deal to sign Gaitan.
They will certainly be confident of agreeing a deal ahead of Liverpool as they have more money to offer and the lure of Champions League football.
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