Liverpool are set to make an improved offer for Southampton midfielder Romeo Lavia.

The Athletic revealed on Tuesday that their opening bid worth around £37million ($44.5m) for the Belgium international had been rejected.

Southampton, who were relegated to the Championship in May, are holding out for an overall package in the region of £50m.

However, negotiations are ongoing and there is now an increasing likelihood of a deal being agreed. It is possible that add-ons take Liverpool to a figure that Southampton deem acceptable.

Personal terms will not be an issue, although Chelsea also retain a firm interest in Lavia.

The 19-year-old played 45 minutes for Southampton in their 3-2 friendly defeat by Bournemouth at St Mary’s on Tuesday night.

Asked about Lavia’s future, manager Russell Martin said: “I thought Romeo, considering what’s going on, to play tonight and do all that stuff, it was good for him to get on the pitch as he has not had the minutes other people have had.

“You can ask for an update but I can’t give you one because I don’t know. I’m going to speak to (sporting director) Jason (Wilcox) now but I’ve been preparing for this game.”

Liverpool returned to Merseyside on Monday after a training camp in Germany. Jurgen Klopp’s squad fly out to Singapore on Thursday for a week-long trip which involves games against Leicester City and Bayern Munich.



Romeo Lavia is Southampton’s utopia – a youthful buy to sell for big profit. He has excelled

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Liverpool are also set to lose captain Jordan Henderson, who has agreed a move to Saudi Pro League side Al Ettifaq. They had been prepared to see Fabinho depart for Al Ittihad too, but that move is in jeopardy.

The Merseyside club, meanwhile, have also been interested in Crystal Palace’s Cheick Doucoure, Fiorentina’s Sofyan Amrabat, Bayern Munich’s Ryan Gravenberch and Manchester City’s Kalvin Phillips.

Lavia made 29 appearances as Southampton were relegated last season, missing a chunk of the campaign due to a hamstring injury. He was also subject to a £50m deadline day approach from Chelsea last September, despite only having joined Southampton a few months earlier.

How good is Romeo Lavia?

By Jacob Tanswell

Lavia has a supreme ability to pass, receive and move with the ball in a way most cannot. Every action is flowing and well-oiled, every pass has a short backlift yet is crisp and precise. Every touch has a purpose and sets up the next.

Whatever situation, stadium or opponent he faces, he is never ruffled.

He was regarded as Southampton’s only transformative player in possession last season, adept in breaking lines and regulating the overall tempo of a game. Lavia’s composure in the most frenzied part of the pitch in the most dysfunctional side in the league was remarkable.

(Photo: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

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