Liverpool are reported to have arranged a meeting with the agent of Bruno Fernandes after making an 11th hour bid to beat Manchester United to the in-demand Sporting Lisbon midfielder.
Fernandes scored or assisted 50 goals in 53 appearances this season in the Primeira Liga – and has an €80m (£71m) exit clause in his contract which is attracting interest from a number of top clubs.
The playmaker has been heavily linked with a move to Old Trafford as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks to freshen up his midfield, and the Red Devils are believed to be in the driving seat as they look to secure what is widely expected to be a £50million swoop.
Reports have also linked Liverpool with a £40m offer and while the Reds are not expected to raise their offer, reports in the Portuguese press claims they could yet pip United to the deal by offering Sporting their pick of some of their young stars as a sweetener.
As such, Correio da Manha claims Liverpool have now offered Sporting £40m plus the chance to sign their coveted youngster, Rafael Camacho. The Portuguese youngster is looking to leave Anfield this summer to further his first-team prospects and has been strongly linked with a move to Wolves.
But Liverpool are said to prefer to use Camacho as bait to land Fernandes, with Sporting already said to be considering an approach of their own for a player Liverpool rate at around the £12million mark.
And that could tip the deal in Liverpool’s favour, with Correio da Manha suggesting Jurgen Klopp’s men could now be the favourites to land the Portugal midfielder and fill the creative midfield role lacking at Anfield since Philippe Coutinho’s departure to Barcelona in January 2018.
The player’s agent will reportedly arrive in the UK for talks with United officials on Friday, but the report claims Miguel Pinho will now also sit down with Liverpool to discuss their approach when he touches down in London.
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