Liverpool are reportedly readying a bid of £8 million to bring Schalke's 18-year-old midfield star Max Meyer to Anfield.
The German youngster had an impressive season in the Bundesliga as Schalke finished third, and Reds boss Brendan Rodgers is looking to bring him in to bolster his squad as he prepares for Champions League football next season, per Metro:
Reds scouts have been following the 18-year-old closely in the last few months, and reports in Germany suggest a deal is now firmly on the cards.
It’s thought that Brendan Rodgers will make an £8million offer before the weekend, with the club hopeful it will be enough to do business.
Meyer reportedly turned down the chance to move to Chelsea in January as he wasn't sure he would get enough game time at Stamford Bridge.
It will be up to Rodgers to persuade Meyer he will be valued at Anfield, although there is no question he would certainly fit well into the Northern Irishman's rapid counterattacking style.
He is a skilled playmaker and would be a fine addition to Liverpool's attacking unit, adding much-needed depth to a thin squad ahead of next season's European action.
He appeared 30 times in the Bundesliga in 2013-14, with 21 of them coming as a starter. He scored six goals and provided three assists, per WhoScored.com.
Curiously, reports back in February suggested he had a buyout clause of €25.5 million (£20 million), quite a lot more than Liverpool's proposed offer, per Bundesliga expert Cristian Nyari:
According to Bild, Max Meyer has a 25.5m Euro buyout clause in his contract. Chelsea already bid 15m. 25.5m is a bargain for that talent.— Cristian Nyari (@Cnyari) February 6, 2014
If Nyari rates Meyer at £20 million, then it certainly seems Rodgers could be in for a bargain, even if the price does rise slightly from the £8 million offer.
It looks as though Rodgers may be missing out on one of his other summer targets, with reports suggesting Barcelona forward Pedro will remain at the Camp Nou this summer.
As reported by Gordon Tynan of The Independent last month, Liverpool are interested in signing the 26-year-old, whose future looked uncertain after the arrival of new Barca boss Luis Enrique, who was looking to shake things up after a trophyless 2013-14 season:
The players must know that you cannot let a year pass at Barca. If they are not at the level required then there will be changes.
We will reinforce the team in the best way possible, to be as competitive as possible. There is a market there - teams ask a lot of money for players. You must manage it all. We will reinforce, maybe in all lines of the team, to have the best players for the club and for me.
However, Mundo Deportivo (via Ben Burrows of The Mirror) is now reporting that the Spaniard will be staying put. Burrows notes that Barcelona "are aware of the club's interest, but are not listening to offers."
While this is a blow, Liverpool have bags of attacking options currently, and Meyer should be the priority for the Anfield outfit.
Should Liverpool pursue Pedro?
Given his youth and the amount of influence he could conceivably have at the club for years to come, he could be a very valuable asset.
Rodgers has already done good business in the transfer window so far, but further strength is needed ahead of next season. The young German would certainly add quality and would likely be an exciting prospect for players and fans alike.
The Liverpool hierarchy seemingly have a strong transfer plan, and they seem to be carrying it out well, strengthening across the pitch and investing well.