LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, February 18, 2015: The Liverpool FC badge during a press conference ahead of the UEFA Europa League Round of 32 1st leg match against Besiktas JK at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda) (General Pic)

Liverpool interested in “best young English talent in League One,” James Maddison

Liverpool are reportedly battling with Arsenal to sign “the best young English talent in League One”, Coventry City attacking midfielder James Maddison.

According to the Independent, the 19-year-old Coventry could end up selling the player in January and loaning him back in a similar way MK Dons did with Dele Alli last season.

Maddison is described as a technically gifted playmaker, but has missed much of the season through injury after suffering bone and ligament damage to an ankle in August. He made his return for the Sky Blues last weekend, playing the last 20 minutes in a 1-1 draw against Oldham.

Coventry are fourth in League One, with Liverpool under-21 attacker Ryan Kent enjoying a good spell of form on loan there under the tutelage of manager Tony Mowbray. Liverpool’s relationship with the club there could perhaps give them the edge in a deal for Maddison.

News of Liverpool’s interest in Maddison arrives the same week the club reportedly secured a deal for another 19-year-old midfielder, Serbian Marko Grujic.

The potential signings of two 19-year-old’s is hardly going to enthuse fans who feel the club desperately need to sign proven quality players – especially when this latest report claims Coventry may want as much as £10 million should they be promoted to the Championship this season.

It’s also worrying that signing players of this age would likely block the progress of other emerging midfield talents from the academy, namely Jordan Rossiter, Pedro Chirivella, Cameron Brannagan and Joao Teixeira – how would signing Grujic and Maddison impact them?

Related: LFC Academy to focus on quality rather than quantity