Liverpool is ready to launch an ambitious bid to land Henrikh Mkhitaryan from Shakhtar Donetsk.
The Armenia international has a burgeoning reputation and Liverpool, who have scouted the midfielder on several occasions, would have to pay more than £20million to stand any chance of signing him.
Such a price tag, though, would not deter Liverpool from moving for Mkhitaryan and he, along with Schalke defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos, is one of the club’s prime targets for the summer window. Liverpool is also tracking Aston Villa’s Christian Benteke.
The decision to move for the skillful Mkhitaryan has not been triggered by Luis Suarez’s declaration that he is determined to leave Anfield. Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid are leading the chase for the Uruguyan, who has still not told Liverpool directly he wants a transfer.
Liverpool intend to bolster their forward line and the 24-year-old is viewed as a player who could significantly enhance their bid to get back in the top four – he scored more than 20 goals for Shakthar last season.
A significant proportion of the fee that Liverpool would be required to pay for Mkhitaryan could be recouped before the end of the week, as Andy Carroll edges closer to a move to West Ham United.
The England international has been considering his options since the clubs agreed a £15million deal and had not given up the idea of reviving his Anfield career but that avenue is no longer feasible and Carroll has accepted he must move on.