Liverpool target Ilkay Gundogan has admitted his future is up in the air, while the Reds are reportedly prepared to meet Bayern Munich's €50 million (£37.6 million) valuation for Mario Gotze.
Per Uche Amako in the Express, the Reds have long been linked with a move for Borussia Dortmund's Gundogan, not least because Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp used to manage him at the Westfalenstadion.
They have now been given a boost in their pursuit of the German after he revealed he had made no definitive plans for his future at Dortmund, per Bild (via Goal.com's Sacha Pisani):
"There is still no decision, and of course, everything has to be considered very carefully, because your career is limited in time. But to be honest, everything is still open. I know what I have at my club, and I'm not going to lose sight of it. But again, a decision is definitely not made."
Gundogan has been a key part of Thomas Tuchel's side this season, starting 16 of Dortmund's 17 Bundesliga games and making a significant impact in his central-midfield role, per WhoScored.com.
However, he is only contracted to the club until 2017, and if he is not prepared to sign on for longer, then Dortmund may feel the time is right to cash in on the highly rated 25-year-old.
As noted by Bleacher Report's Marcus Speller and Dean Jones, the Reds are currently enduring a major injury crisis, and January additions are highly likely:
Given that the current transfer window offers Klopp his first opportunity to add players to his side since his appointment, he may well be eager to bring in someone like Gundogan given his familiarity with the German international.
Furthermore, Gundogan is a highly accomplished central midfielder and could be very influential in Klopp's Liverpool side, who have, at times, lacked invention from the middle with the likes of Jordan Henderson, James Milner and Joe Allen.
Another potentially exciting addition to the Liverpool squad could be Gotze, with the Reds reportedly willing to table the €50 million (£37.6 million) it would take to land the forward, thus meeting Bayern's asking price, per Spanish outlet Fichajes (via Marc Williams in the Daily Star).
Gotze made a big-money move from Klopp's Dortmund to Bayern in 2013 but has subsequently failed to nail down a consistent starting spot under manager Pep Guardiola.
He has made just seven Bundesliga appearances this season—three of them as a substitute—and the 23-year-old would surely be open to a potential move away from the Allianz Arena if it meant more regular first-team action, per WhoScored.
Gotze is a phenomenal attacking talent and could bring some much-needed verve and quality to the Reds' front line.
Klopp is currently short on options in attack, with Daniel Sturridge struggling for fitness, Philippe Coutinho and Danny Ings sidelined through injury, and Christian Benteke and Roberto Firmino struggling for consistency.
However, according to BT Sport's German football expert Raphael Honigstein, the Reds may have to wait until the summer to sign Gotze, as the World Cup winner wants to establish what his role at Bayern will be under incoming boss Carlo Ancelotti:
BT Sport Football @btsportfootball
.@MarioGoetze to @LFC? @Aubameyang7 to @Arsenal? @honigstein gives #BTEFS the lowdown on the #Bundesliga rumours. https://t.co/BbnQl6qJg42016-1-10 18:56:49
Thus, Klopp may have to look elsewhere if he wants to make significant attacking additions to his squad in January.