Liverpool transfer round-up: Joao Teixeira linked with surprise exit, Benteke latest

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According to the Daily Mail, Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke has his heart set on a move to Liverpool - but could be forced to ask for a transfer.

Liverpool have plenty of money to spend having sold Raheem Sterling to Manchester City earlier this week, and Benteke appears to be the top target as manager Brendan Rodgers looks to strengthen his attack.

The Daily Mail believe that Benteke wants to sign for Liverpool, but Aston Villa are playing hardball over the fee required to sell the striker, meaning the Belgian international may have to ask for a transfer in order to force through a move to Merseyside.

If Benteke does sign, Liverpool would certainly sell at least one striker, and Tutto Mercato Web report that Sampdoria remain interested in signing Mario Balotelli.

The Italian forward has had a torrid time at Anfield since his move from AC Milan last summer, and a return to Serie A would certainly help both Liverpool and the player.

Elsewhere, The Sun report that young playmaker Joao Teixeira could leave the club on a permanent basis this summer, having spent last season on loan at Brighton.

The 22-year-old Portuguese midfielder is looking for first team football, and the report notes that Newcastle and West Ham are both interested in signing him, in what would be a surprise move for a player given very few chances by Liverpool.

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