Liverpool poised for Benitez battle in Euro striker chase

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Inter Milan have reportedly joined Liverpool in the race to sign Bolton Wanderers striker Johan Elmander.

The Sweedish international forward has been in great form for his club in the Premier League this season, leading to speculation that Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson was keen to bring the player to Anfield.

However, the Sunday Mirror claims that former Reds boss Rafa Benitez is keen to bring the player to the San Siro, and will challenge the Merseyside outfit at the first opportunity in January.

Elmander's contract is set to expire at the Reebok in the summer, and several club's are thought to have taken an interest in Owen Coyle's prized asset.

The Trotters risk losing the player on a free transfer, and Liverpool are reportedly ready to tempt their Premier League rivals with an opening bid in the New Year.

New Reds owners NESV have promised the manager a transfer war chest in the region of £35 million, and an attacking foil for Fernando Torres is thought to be the priority for Liverpool.

Sammy Lee has been watching the player closely this season, with the Liverpool number two reportedly providing positive feedback to Hodgson on the player's attributes.

Interest from other clubs is not unexpected following the player's fine start to the season, but Liverpool would not wish to lose out to their former boss after his summer exit.

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