Benfica tell Liverpool to fork out £30m for Lazar Markovic

Liverpool have been told by Benfica to pay £30m to land Serbian winger Lazar Markovic from under the noses of Chelsea this summer.

The Reds' title push took another huge boost today as they beat Manchester City 3-2 at Anfield. Goals from Raheem Sterling, Martin Skrtel and Philippe Coutinho gave Brendan Rodgers' side the win, leaving them two points clear of Chelsea at the top of the Premier League table with just four games to go.

It's been a successful season at Anfield whether they win the Premier League or not, and manager Rodgers will be looking to strengthen his side this summer as they prepare to return to Champions League action, and the former Swansea City boss has been on the lookout for a winger for some time, having missed out on the likes of Willian, Mohamed Salah and Yevhen Konoplyanka recently.

The latest target for Rodgers appears to be Benfica's Serbian star Lazar Markovic, who only moved to the Portuguese giants from Partizan Belgrade last summer. The pacey forward has impressed with a number of promising displays, which has triggered interest from Chelsea.

But recent speculation has suggested that Liverpool are hoping to pip them to his signing, particularly after the Blues signed Willian and Salah ahead of the Reds over the last year.

Reds scouts have recently been watching the 20-year-old in action for Serbia, and new reports today state that Benfica have told Liverpool it will cost them £30m to prise Markovic away from the Estadio da Luz.

With the anticipated increased budget from Champions League qualification and possibly the title win, Rodgers will have money to spend and could choose to spend a large portion of it on Markovic - despite also needing help in other areas of the pitch.

But with Chelsea also interested, beating them to Markovic's signature could be the primary indication that Liverpool truly are back amongst the big sides in England.

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