Liverpool transfer decision could hamper Aston Villa hopes of landing England star

Aston Villa could miss out on a key transfer target after a decision by Premier League rivals Liverpool

Liverpool could be set to make a move that would have a significant impact on Aston Villa’s plans for the January transfer window.

The Reds were dealt a major blow over the weekend when it was confirmed summer signing Arthur Melo is facing ‘three to four months’ on the sidelines after suffering an injury in training last week. That has further stretched Jurgen Klopp’s midfield options and that could force the former Borussia Dortmund manager into action when the transfer trading gets underway in January.

Liverpool are reportedly ready to follow up their initial interest in Lazio and Serbia Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, who has been linked with a move to Manchester United and Newcastle United in recent months. The £61m-rated midfielder has become one of the most consistent midfielders in Serie A after shining throughout his eight-year stay with the Biancocelesti.

Since joining Lazio from Belgian side Genk in July 2015, Milinkovic-Savic has helped the Rome-based club land the Coppa Italia and SuperCoppa Italia, as well as winning 35 caps for Serbia.

Italian outlet TMW have now reported Liverpool will make a move for the 27-year-old - but are not willing to pay the reported £61m asking price to bring him to the Premier League. The Reds are willing to part with one of their players to bring down the fee and could offer reported Aston Villa target Joe Gomez in a part-exchange deal.

The report adds Liverpool rated the England defender at around the £30m-mark, meaning they could cut the asking price for Milinkovic-Savic in half by allowing Gomez to move to the Stadio Olimpico. Villa manager Steven Gerrard is said to be a long-term admirer of the 25-year-old defender but could now face an uphill battle to bring the 11-times capped England international to Villa Park.