Lazar Markovic is set to complete a move to Liverpool as Brendan Rodgers looks to reshape his side for next season
Liverpool look to be closing in on their fourth summer signing as Serbian winger Lazar Markovic is set to join the Merseyside club.
BBC reported that the move could be completed in the next 24 hours, after the Benfica player was rumored to be having his medical at Melwood today. The fee for the 20-year-old is believed to be £20m.
Liverpool need to add a lot to their squad as they make a return to Champions League after a gap of 5 years. They would be participating in four competitions next season and Brendan Rodgers has undertaken the task of of getting in players who would help his side in the three cup competitions as well as the league next season. The Reds are expected to carry on their good form of the last season, where they narrowly missed out on the title.
Chelsea have been studying his development for some time now and were linked to make a move for the player in the winter transfer window by the Portuguese media. Due to the club’s healthy relationship with Partizan (Lazar’s club prior to the Portuguese giants) and Benfica, the club has been reputed to have already negotiated a first option clause to be able to buy him at £12.5million. It was reported in the Portuguese media that they made the approach but Markovic decided to pass up on the offer because he thought he wouldn’t get much playing time there. There are also reports that Chelsea decided not to make use of this clause at all.
Liverpool reluctantly sold Luis Suarez some days back to Barcelona for £75m. While the sum justifies his quality, Suarez’s absence is hard to be filled. There is no direct replacement to one of the best, albeit controversial, players in the world, Rodgers can target 2-3 players to make sure the 27 year old’s void is not felt next season. The Anfield outfit has already got Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana from Southampton and Emre Can from Bayer Leverkusen. It looks like Markovic is going to be Brendan Rodgers’s fourth signing of the summer.
We reported back in March that Liverpool sent chief scout Barry Hunter to Ireland to watch Markovic in Serbia’s 2-1 win over Republic of Ireland where he played for 75 minutes.
The 20 year old had a great season with Benfica where he helped the side reach the Europa league finals. He missed out on the final against Sevilla because of suspension. He scored five goals and grabbed five goals in 26 appearances in the league.
A highly rated attacker, Markovic can play on either flanks and through the middle. He is affectionately called ‘The Butterfly’ because he is very light footed and it often seems that he is gliding along with the ball. He would make the attack of Liverpool more dangerous as he can directly sit in the starting 11, but would prove further beneficial in competing with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho for the starting spot.
He posted a picture on his official Facebook page where he is holding a Liverpool shirt. It is captained ‘Next Destination- Liverpool FC’. It seems that Liverpool’s official announcement is only a matter of some time.