Liverpool are anticipating bids for Nat Phillips this week, with Fulham and Bournemouth among those keen on signing the centre-back, GOAL understands..
The 25-year-old is expected to leave Anfield this summer in search of regular first-team football, but as yet no side have been willing to meet the Reds’ asking price, understood to be in excess of £10 million ($12m).
That looks set to change, with at least four clubs having approached Liverpool about the former Bolton man.
Who is likely to sign Phillips in this window?
Both Fulham and Bournemouth, GOAL understands, are interested, with both in need of defensive reinforcements ahead of the new season.
Phillips spent the second half of last season on loan with Bournemouth, making 18 appearances and helping them win promotion to the Premier League.
Cherries boss Scott Parker admitted this weekend that he was yet to replace him, or the veteran Gary Cahill, and that new signings were a must if Bournemouth were to compete in the top-flight.
Similarly, Fulham manager Marco Silva has bemoaned a lack of squad depth at Craven Cottage, pointing out the Cottagers, in his eyes, have only two fit, senior centre-back options ahead of their season opener, which ironically is against Liverpool on Saturday.
Silva has a good relationship with Julian Ward, Liverpool’s new sporting director, and is understood to be a fan of Phillips’ no-nonsense style.
Liverpool would prefer a permanent move as opposed to a loan, believing it is fair to the player, even though Jurgen Klopp would be happy to keep him as a fifth-choice centre-back option.
It is also understood that at least two Serie A clubs are monitoring Phillips’ situation, though whether either are prepared to spend £10m ($12.25m) or more remains to be seen.
Liverpool turned down an offer of £7m from Watford in January, and rejected an even lower bid from Anderlecht before that.
Any other transfer news at Liverpool?
Meanwhile, teenage midfielder Tyler Morton has joined Championship side Blackburn on a season-long loan deal.
The 19-year-old, who made nine senior appearances for the Reds last term, becomes the latest youngster to depart on a temporary basis, joining the likes of Rhys Williams (Blackpool), James Balagizi (Crawley), Owen Beck (Famalicao), Viteszlav Jaros (Stockport), Marcelo Pitaluga (Macclesfield), Conor Bradley (Bolton) and Billy Koumetio (Austria Vienna).