Manchester United 'still in the race' for Romeo Lavia amid Liverpool new bid

Manchester United are, sensationally, 'still in the race' for Southampton's Romeo Lavia, according to one report.

The 19-year-old midfielder has been the number one transfer objective for Liverpool in recent weeks, having been identified as a successor to the departing Fabinho.

After a first official bid was rejected, Liverpool are set to return with a new offer, closer to the Saints' £50m valuation.

After The Times' Paul Joyce reported news of the latest bid on Monday, Fabrizio Romano tweeted that the offer will be worth 'in the region of £45m'.

The Reds are thought to be moving fast to get ahead of the competition, while Fabinho nears an exit to Saudi Arabia.

Chelsea had long been considered Liverpool's biggest rivals for Lavia, and were tipped to make a move for the midfielder if they were to fail in their attempts sign Moises Caicedo from Brighton.

However, the Daily Mail now claims that Chelsea are not Liverpool's only rivals interested in Lavia and that Manchester United are the 'surprise elements' making up a trio of Premier League suitors. The report adds that as well as United being 'still in the race', there is also interest from an unnamed foreign club.

READ MORE: How do Erik ten Hag and Jurgen Klopp's net spends at Man Utd and Liverpool compare?

While this latest twist adds more pressure on the Reds to get the deal over the line, it is hard to believe there is a real chance of United actually hijacking the transfer.

The Mail's piece concedes that Erik ten Hag's side would need to sell before buying again, while the cheaper, older Sofyan Amrabat – also linked with Liverpool – is United's first choice to strengthen in the holding midfield role.

The added noise around Lavia may serve Southampton in negotiating the best possible price for their player, however.

The newly relegated side have held firm on their £50m valuation, buoyed by the range of interest in Lavia, as well as Liverpool's need to strengthen, following the exits of Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Arthur Melo and, imminently, Fabinho.

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