Liverpool have entered the race to sign Roberto Firmino alongside fierce rivals Manchester United, according to reports in Brazil.
The Hoffenheim ace has been the subject of intense speculation in recent weeks having been named in Brazil's squad for the Copa America.
It has been claimed that Manchester United were in the driving seat for his signature and are ready to table an offer worth £13 million - however that could now all change. According to Globoesporte in Brazil, Liverpool have thrown their hat into the ring.
Article continues below
Firmino managed seven Bundesliga goals last season and has emerged as one of the new faces for Brazil as they look to emerge from their disastrous World Cup campaign.
Hoffenheim will reportedly try and hold out for a fee of €25 million for the talented 23-year-old, well in excess of Manchester United's valuation. “All I can say is that he’s moving to England,” his agent Roger Wittmann told Germany’s Bild newspaper earlier this week.
Article continues below
The forward's future is likely to be sorted once Brazil's participation in the Copa America comes to an end, and that may not be until July 4 if they reach the final.
Both Manchester United and Liverpool are in need of reinforcements in attack this summer after disappointing seasons in front of goal.
Brendan Rodgers' gamble of signing Mario Balotelli to help replace Luis Suarez backfired spectacularly and the Italian is likely to be sold this summer. Fabio Borini and Rickie Lambert could also be off, leaving Daniel Sturridge and the incoming Divock Origi as Liverpool's only forward options.
Manchester United meanwhile have already let Radamel Falcao return to Monaco after his loan spell at Old Trafford came to an end. Robin van Persie has hinted that he's considering his options with just one year left to run on his contract with the Red Devils, and boss Louis van Gaal is said to be pondering swoops for some of Europe's top strikers including Karim Benzema and Edinson Cavani.
There's been plenty of buzz about Firmino for some time now, but he's a raw talent and can't be counted on to explode next season and guide either side back to the top.
Liverpool's interest is said to be 'strong' but Brendan Rodgers needs big stars ready to play for him now. After all, his job is on the line this season and he needs to hit the ground running or else. Manchester United have more time on their hands and can bring someone through, and Van Persie will offer more than ample support for Wayne Rooney next season if he stays.