Liverpool have reportedly joined Manchester United in the race to sign Benfica youngster Antonio Silva, as per the Football Transfers.
Having endured a disappointing campaign so far this term, it has widely been suggested that the Reds are plotting a squad overhaul at the end of this season and are prioritising strengthening their midfield department. But, it seems they are also keen on bolstering their backline as well.
Liverpool have started to be linked with several defenders in recent times, with reports suggesting they are eyeing Josko Gvardiol, but Silva has now also emerged as a serious target for the Merseyside club.
According to the report by Football Transfers, Jurgen Klopp is expected to be handed a big transfer budget next summer to reshape his squad and challenge for big honours once again. But, that sum could get reduced if they fail to qualify for the Champions League next season.
The report further claims that Liverpool are looking for a long-term replacement for Virgil van Dijk – who has been the mainstay of the Reds’ success during Klopp’s tenure – and are eyeing a move for Silva.
However, it has previously been reported that Liverpool are set to face tough competition in signing Silva as arch-rivals Manchester United are also showing an interest in purchasing the 19-year-old as a replacement for Harry Maguire, who is linked with a move away from Old Trafford.
Erik ten Hag is reportedly keen on strengthening his squad in the summer and centre-back is one of the positions where the Dutch boss wants reinforcements.
Silva still has four and a half years left in his current contract so Benfica are in a strong position to ask a big fee if they are forced to sell the youngster next summer. And it has been mentioned that the Portuguese giants want a fee of at least £71m to let the defender leave over the coming months.
Despite being at this very tender age, the Portuguese has managed to establish himself as a regular starter in Benfica’s first eleven this term, scoring two goals and keeping nine clean sheets in 17 Liga Portugal appearances.
Silva is technically sound, can play out from the back, has the ability to play threading passes between the lines and is excellent at defending as well. So, the defender possesses high potential and he would be a great acquisition if Liverpool or Man Utd were to be able to broker a deal for him next summer.