Liverpool prepare 'crazy money' offer for 'top transfer target'

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Ashley Young is reportedly top of Liverpool's January shopping list, although it will take 'crazy money' to land the winger.

There has been growing speculation in recent days that the 25-year-old could be set to leave Aston Villa during the transfer window and - according to - the Villains have entertained a 'host of enquiries'.

However, Liverpool are thought to be the frontrunners for his signature and The Guardian reports that the Anfield club continue to monitor their target.

It has been reported that Liverpool will bid £18 million for the England international in the coming days, but Villa boss Gerard Houllier has previously hinted it would take more than that to land one of his prized assets.

"We are hoping we can keep him. The club's will is to keep him. We want to keep the club developing," the former Liverpool manager told The Sun.

"He told us very clearly he wants to wait until the end of the season. We are comfortable with that.

"Obviously, if someone comes in with crazy money, anything can happen in football. Let's wait and see. I don't think he will leave in January.

"It would be brave to hang on to him. But I'm brave and I think [Villa chairman] Mr Lerner is too.

"Sometimes it pays to hang on to players."

Young is sharing the billing of Liverpool's 'top transfer target' along with Ajax captain Luis Suarez - says The Guardian - and the capture of either player would represent quite a coup for the Merseysiders.

Suarez has long been a target for a number of top European clubs, while Liverpool are expected to have to fight off interest from a host of Premier League rivals for Young.

Liverpool have also been linked with moves for Villa duo Stewart Downing and Stephen Warnock this month as owners New England Sports Ventures attempt to transform fortunes at Anfield.

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