The front page of Portuguese paper Record on Tuesday pits Liverpool against Chelsea in a battle to sign Benfica starlet Lazar Markovic.
The headline screams “Crazy English in for Markovic – Liverpool & Chelsea take the lead in the race for his services”.
In truth, links between the Pensioners and Reds over a move for Serbian talent Markovic are not that new.
Several days ago the Star reported that the Reds are set to beat Chelsea to the signature of 20-year-old Markovic, while a fee of £30 million deal was talked about as being enough money to make the deal happen.
Looking further back, in the January transfer window it was rumoured that Chelsea had a secured option to buy Benfica’s Lazar Markovic for €15m.
Now 20, Markovic signed a five year contract at the Stadium of Light, but it’s been reported that Chelsea managed to broker a deal that ensured the Blues have an option to buy the talented Serb.
According to the rumour mill, Markovic has a confusing ownership situation with Benfica owning 50% of the player while a fund owns the other 50%.
Within that framework, Chelsea have option to buy Benfica’s 50% share (which cost Benfica €6.5m) for just €7.5m, which means the total acquisition cost for the attacking midfielder would be €15m.
Last season Markovic scored five goals in 25 games for the Portuguese champions.