Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp admitted on the eve of Wednesday's friendly with Bayern Munich that "it's no secret that we're still looking for new players to join us" - and the priority right now is wrapping up a deal for Romeo Lavia.
And that's perfectly understandable. Following the shock sales of Jordan Henderson and Fabinho to Saudi Pro League clubs, Liverpool have only one remaining No.6 on their books - 18-year-old Stefan Bajcetic, who has only just returned from the injury that prematurely ended his 2022-23 campaign. The Reds simply cannot go into the new season, which gets underway next week, without at least one more defensive midfielder.
The Lavia deal is also a matter of urgency because Chelsea remain very interested in the Southampton starlet and are being frustrated by Brighton in their attempts to sign Moises Caicedo. It is only right, then, that Liverpool are primarily focused on agreeing a fee for Lavia as soon as possible.
However, the Reds are also facing a race against time to bring in a new centre-back - preferably one that can play on the left-hand side - before their Premier League opener at Chelsea on August 13.