Liverpool transfer twist as midfielder ‘prefers’ Anfield move and Reds ‘still interested’ in £26m-rated star

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The latest Liverpool transfer news and rumours ahead of Sunday’s Premier League opener against Chelsea

Romeo Lavia reportedly still prefers a move to Liverpool ahead of Chelsea amid reports the Stamford Bridge club are close to agreeing a fee with Southampton for the player.

The Premier League rivals have been locked in a peculiar transfer battle in recent days with both clubs submitting bids for the Saints midfielder as well as making offers to Brighton and Hove Albion for Moisés Caicedo.

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Chelsea made a £48m bid for Lavia earlier in the week after the Reds had three bids rejected for the 19-year-old - with their last offer standing at £45m.

The Reds have an offer on the table for Caicedo worth a British record £111m but he is said to prefer a move to Chelsea, although their latest bid is reported to stand at £100m.

Sacha Tavolieri reports Lavia has not changed his mind on his preferred destination but Liverpool could need to offer more than the £50m wanted by Southampton after reports Chelsea are close to agreeing a £52m deal with another £3m in add-ons, if they want to secure a deal for the player.

Lavia has yet to feature in either of Southampton’s competitive outings this season as he was on the bench in the Championship opener at Sheffield Wednesday and was not part of the squad for the midweek loss to Gillingham in the Carabao Cup.

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Liverpool are in the market for new midfielders after Fabinho and Jordan Henderson departed for Saudi Arabia sides Al-Ittihad and Al-Ettifaq respectively.

According to Brazilian outlet Globo, Liverpool are still interested in Fluminense midfielder Andre with their moves for Caicedo and Lavia in doubt.

Fluminense’s preference is said to be for the player to remain with the club until January but reports in Spain recently suggested they would sell the player for a fee in the region of £26m. It could provide Liverpool with a cheaper alternative as they head into the Premier League season short on midfield options.

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