Liverpool join race for Spanish starlet

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Liverpool are the latest Premier League side to take an interest in Barcelona youngster Oriol Romeu.

The defensive midfielder is expected to leave the Nou Camp when the January transfer window opens, and new Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson is the newest manager to begin monitoring the player's situation.

Original reports from Spain placed Arsenal as the favourites to land the coveted teenager, whilst Tottenham Hotspur, Everton and Newcastle were also thought to be keen on the U20 international.

Spanish newspaper Sport now place the Reds amongst the favourites to sign the 18-year-old, who is thought to be willing to leave his hometown club in a bid to play first team football.

Romeu joined the Barca academy from Espanyol in 2004, and successfully graduated to the Barcelona B team in 2008.

After being included in the first team squad on a handful of occasions, the player made his debut in August against Sevilla in the Spanish SuperCup.

A versatile player who can also slot in at centre back, the arrival of Javier Mascherano is thought to have played some part in Romeu's willingness to leave the Catalan club.

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