Liverpool winger Lazar Markovic is expected to be another victim of Jurgen Klopp’s squad trimming, according to a report.
The 22-year-old was hoping to get a chance to impress Klopp in pre-season and the coach had hinted that would be the case, but the lack of European football at Anfield means Klopp has been told to trim his squad.
Goal claim there have been enquiries from clubs in Spain and Italy for Markovic, but Portuguese outfit Sporting Lisbon are leading the chase for the player, who spent last season on loan at Fenerbahce.
Sporting boss Jorge Jesus worked with Markovic when he was with Benfica in 2013/14 and Jesus is believed to be eager to be reunited with Markovic, who has a contract at Anfield until 2019.
Last week Klopp reportedly told his players up to eight of his Liverpool’s squad were set for the chop and since then Sergi Canos, Martin Skrtel and Jordan Ibe have left the club, while Mario Balotelli, Christian Benteke, Lucas and Joe Allen could all leave this summer.
Klopp originally told Markovic, who has featured in the recent friendlies with Tranmere and Fleetwood, he would be afforded a clean slate earlier this year and Markovic is believed to have returned to pre-season training in good shape despite missing more than three months of action in Turkey from February to May with a hamstring problem.
“I will say at the start of pre-season, ‘welcome, and then it’s up to you’,” Klopp said of Markovic in March.
“That is how it is in football, it is a long pre-season and if he wants to come back to Liverpool on July 2, then you are welcome.
“We are short on wingers. Everybody who is involved in pre-season can have a part to play next season. We need a big squad because of the European Championships.
“Pre-season is a long time to show what you have and then after this we’ll make decisions.”