Liverpool prepare €8.5 million bid after midfield scouting trip

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Liverpool are reportedly preparing a January bid for Palermo midfielder Josip Ilicic.

The 22-year-old Slovenian international has been in excellent form for his Serie 'A' club so far this season, prompting interest from some of Europe's biggest clubs.

Reds boss Roy Hodgson is thought to be one of the interested parties, with the Liverpool chief looking to strengthen in the central area in the opening month of 2011.

Bayern Munich have also been linked with a move, while a string of La Liga outfits are also thought to be monitoring the situation. However, Liverpool have made their intentions clear after sending scouts to watch the player at the Stadio Renzo Barbera.

Ilicic signed for Palermo from Maribor in the summer for a fee in the region of £2 million, but his instant success in the Italian top flight has led to speculation over a rapid move.

Liverpool are keen to bring the player to the Premier League, believing the player can transfer his goalscoring credential across into the English league.

An attacking midfielder, Ilicic has scored six goals in just 13 games from the position this season.

Hodgson is thought to have a transfer war chest in the region of £35 million at Anfield following the arrival of NESV at Liverpool, and the former Fulham boss is thought to have 'five or six' players on his January wish list already.

An attacking foil to Fernando Torres was thought to be the priority on Merseyside, but injuries have forced Hodgson to consider strengthening in several position.

Ilicic is one of the players targeted by Liverpool following the arrival of Damien Comolli, Director of Football strategy at the club, and talkSPORT claim the Reds are poised to make a move in the New Year.

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