Liverpool interested in Bayer Leverkusen winger Julian Brandt, but no January bid guaranteed

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Liverpool’s interest in young Bayer Leverkusen winger Julian Brandt seems genuine, but he’s not necessarily a January target.

Jurgen Klopp is targeting options in the wide areas this winter, ahead of Sadio Mane‘s departure to the Africa Cup of Nations with Senegal.

Spartak Moscow star Quincy Promes is also being considered, with the Dutchman valued at £25 million by the Russian side, but Liverpool’s stock in the 24-year-old remains to be seen.

According to Goal’s Melissa Reddy, corroborating previous reports from German publication Express, Brandt is also on Klopp’s list of targets.

Reddy reports that Brandt has been “on the club’s watchlist for years as opposed to months,” but Klopp “has instructed the recruitment team to round up possibilities should Liverpool need to enter the market.”

This does not suggest a move for Brandt is guaranteed, however, with only further absences, adding to Mane and Danny Ings, likely to prompt an offer.

Ings has been ruled out for up to nine months with a knee injury, with the No. 28 previously expected to fill in during the winter.

Furthermore, Reddy reports that “Leverkusen are expected to strongly bat away any enquiries for the player in January,” due to their strong position in the market.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, September 24, 2016: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp during the FA Premier League match against Hull City at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Brandt is currently contracted to Leverkusen until 2019, with a release clause, reportedly between £10.75 million and £17 million, able to be activated in 2018.

Bayern Munich, AC Milan, Manchester City and Juventus are also said to be interested in Brandt, who has been making waves in the Bundesliga over the past four seasons.

He has scored 18 goals and laid on 19 assists in 108 games for Leverkusen so far, and has four senior Germany caps to his name.

Though primarily a left winger, Brandt is also capable of operating on the right flank, with his pace, power and eye for goal making him one of Europe’s most-coveted young prospects.

It makes sense for Klopp to monitor Brandt’s progress, but that Reddy reports a January move will only come if Liverpool are subject to further injuries stands as the most interesting development.

This would suggest Klopp is currently content with Philippe Coutinho, Roberto Firmino, Daniel Sturridge, Divock Origi and Sheyi Ojo as his attacking options in January.

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