Liverpool have made an approach to sign Nottingham Forest striker Ben Brereton, according to a report.
Liverpool football site This Is Anfield claim manager Jurgen Klopp has personally phoned the Forest academy director Gary Brazil this week to enquire about the 17-year-old forward.
It is said that Klopp made the move for the hot prospect on Wednesday in a bid to leapfrog rivals Manchester United in the race to sign him.
This Is Anfield report that United are willing to pay more than £1million to land the Forest rookie, which Liverpool may need to trump if they are to seal a deal this month or in the summer.
Brereton has yet to make his senior Forest debut but he has made a huge impact for the club’s Under-23s this season, scoring 14 goals in 19 matches, including four in a 5-0 away demolition of QPR in October.
Forest are in advanced takeover talks but that did not stop them tying Brereton to new contract that was announced last week.
Owner Fawaz Al Hasawi announced the news on Twitter although he did not disclose the length of the contract.
“Ben is a player we admire greatly and we are all looking forward to seeing him progress with us,” said Al Hasawi.
The 17-year-old’s form under academy chiefs Brazil and Jack Lester has been such that there has been a glowing clamour for him to play in the first team under Philippe Montanier.
But the manager, who has preferred to use senior forwards like Nicklas Bendtner and Britt Assombalonga, explained why Brereton has had to bide his time.
“If he gets stronger, he will only get better. During the week you will often integrate two or three young players into the training sessions,” said Montanier of Brereton, as quoted by the Nottingham Post.
“And that is a good option for us, with him, to progress him and to help him improve. He is not very old. He is 17. You have to be patient. Look at Oliver Burke and how quickly he improved physically and as a player, in a short space of time. You have to give them time.
“Young players can improve their level and then they can play a part in your squad.”