Liverpool plan shock swoop for French striker

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Rafa Benitez has reportedly joined the race to sign Lyon striker Frederic Piquionne.

The Liverpool boss has been linked with a handful of strikers as the January transfer window threatens to spark into life, with Portsmouth's on loan striker rumoured to be on the radar of three Premier League clubs.

Reports in France also place Everton and Aston Villa in the race to sign the Frenchman, who has one international cap to his name.

It is Liverpool who are thought to have made contact with the French giants however, and the Reds are preparing to pounce for the forward who has an uncertain future ahead at Pompey.

Financial troubles at Fratton Park mean that Avram Grant might not be able to keep hold of the 31-year-old, who has scored three times in 17 appearances for the club since his summer season-long loan move.

Despite a relatively poor start to his career in England, recent goals against Chelsea and Liverpool have shot Piquionne into Premier League transfer contention.

Everton boss David Moyes is a known admirer, and is looking to add after striker Jo took a leave of absence at christmas. Martin O'Neill might be opening the door for the exit of a striker, with both Emile Heskey and John Carew linked with moves away from Villa Park, ironically to Liverpool.

The Anfield club have seen Ruud van Nistelrooy and Maxi Rodriguez linked with January moves, but Piquionne is the latest name in the frame for a move to Merseyside.

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Frederic Piquionne
Premier League

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