Asier Illarramendi
Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso has urged manager Rodgers to sign Asier Illarramendi [R] from Real Madrid in the summer. (Reuters)

Liverpool legend Xabi Alonso has reportedly urged manager Brendan Rodgers to sign Asier Illarramendi from Real Madrid during the summer transfer window.

According to talkSPORT, the Reds have joined the race for his signature along with Arsenal, after receiving rave reviews from their former midfield star.

Arsene Wenger and the Gunners are big admirers of the midfielder and were interested in signing even before he moved to the Santiago Bernabeu in 2013.

The Merseyside club will face a battle to land the Spanish midfielder from the reigning European champions club from their north London rivals. According to reports in Spain, Arsenal have already made an approach to secure the midfielder's services in the summer, with the player also keen on a move to England.

The 24-year-old midfielder, who was signed from Real Sociedad as a long-term replacement for Alonso, has struggled to nail down a regular spot in the starting XI. He has made just three starts for Real in the La Liga this season, and is now keen to find a new club at the end of the current campaign.

Illarramendi's chances of regular football further diminished last month after the club signed Brazilian midfielder Lucas Silva from Cruzeiro.

Rodgers is keen to sign a midfielder in the summer to fill the void which will be left by the departure of skipper Steven Gerrard, who will be playing for LA Galaxy in the MLS next season, and the former Liverpool midfielder has given glowing reports to the Northern Irishman regarding Illarramendi.

Alonso, who currently plays for Bayern Munich in Germany, has played with Illarramendi during his time with Real and the young midfielder also came through the same academy as the former Reds favourite at Real Sociedad.