Liverpool linked with 'Little Messi' as long-term Mo Salah replacement

Liverpool are interested in teenage Brazilian sensation Estevao, as part of a plan to replace Mo Salah, according to one report.

Salah's contract, famously, expires at the end of next season, while the Reds will need to make a decision over their record Premier League goalscorer's future sooner rather than later.

With interest from the Saudi Pro League still present, this summer represents the last real chance for Liverpool to cash in on Salah, if he doesn't sign a new contract extension.

There has been talk that Liverpool are keen to open talks with the 31-year-old over his future, but with a new regime coming in behind the scenes, including FSG CEO of football Michael Edwards and sporting director Richard Hughes, nothing is certain.

READ MORE: Every Liverpool first-team player contract expiry dates

Transfer reporter Rudy Galetti claims the Reds are already lining up 'possible replacements' for Salah, naming two targets.

Bayern Munich's Sane, whose contract also expires in 2025, is a named who has been frequently mentioned before. However, 16-year-old Estevao will be a new and intriguing one for most fans in the UK.

Who is Liverpool target known as Messinho?

Estevao became Palmeiras' fourth-youngest ever player when he debuted for the club in December last year at the age of just 16 years and eight months.

Palmeiras is champion of Paulistao 2024 Sao Paulo SP, 04/7/2024 - PAULISTAO/PALMEIRAS x SANTOS - Estevao celebrates after the match between Palmeiras and Santos, valid for the second leg of the 2024 Paulista Football Championship final, held at Allianz Parque, in Sao Paulo , on the night of this Sunday, April 7, 2024. Copyright: xRONALDOxBARRETOx

Also followed by the likes of Barcelona and Chelsea, the highly rated youngster signed a pro deal with Nike at the age of just ten and previously used the nickname Messinho (Little Messi) during his youth.

However, the Brazil Under-17 has since shelved that moniker according to Palmeiras' youth coach Joao Paulo Sampaio, despite clear similarities between the players.

"He prefers Estevao," Sampaio told FIFA. "The Messinho thing was put on hold, but his game is very similar to that of the Argentine."

Of the youngster's potential, he added: “For these out-of-this-world talents, things come easy. It’s difficult for your average player, who make up the vast majority.”

Perhaps unsurprisingly given that nickname, Estevao's dream is to play for Barcelona, according to Mundo Deportivo, while his contractual release clause stands at around £51.5m.

He would not be allowed to move to Europe until he turns 18 in 2025.

Along with Estevao, Liverpool have previously been linked with another Palmeiras attacking talent in Luis Guilherme.

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