Nathaniel Clyne
Southampton defender Nathaniel Clyne is set to join Liverpool Getty

Liverpool are close to completing a deal in signing Southampton defender Nathaniel Clyne, according to the Liverpool Echo.

The 24-year-old has one year left on his contract at St Mary's Stadium and has already rejected a chance to sign a new deal with his current employers. His form has attracted interest from the Merseyside club, while Manchester United have also long been interested in signing him.

Liverpool have managed to beat Louis van Gaal's side for Clyne's signature. The player has rejected a chance to join the 20-time English champions as he has his heart set on making a switch to Anfield.

The Reds had earlier seen their £10m ($15.8m) deal rejected by the Saints. Southampton value Clyne around £15m ($23.7m) and Brendan Rodgers' side are set to place an improved offer in order to land the right-back.

Ronald Koeman is already preparing for life without Clyne as Southampton have lined up a replacement for the defender. The Saints identify Sporting Lisbon's Cedric Soares as the English full-back's successor at the club.

The deal is expected to be sealed between the Premier League outfit and the Portuguese club for the transfer of Soares to England. His arrival to St Mary's Stadium will speed up Clyne's move to Liverpool.

Despite an improved offer from Rodgers' side, no deal has been agreed between Liverpool and Southampton for the right-back's services. The former Swansea manager allowed Glen Johnson to leave the club on a free transfer. Clyne can be a direct replacement for his compatriot at Anfield.

Meanwhile, the Mirror reports Southampton have agreed a £3.5m ($5.5m) deal with Sporting for Soares. Their league rivals Stoke City were interested in signing the Portuguese international.

However, Koeman's side have managed to beat the competition from Stoke in securing Soares' signature. Even the Mirror claims the arrival of the Sporting defender will then allow Clyne to make a move to Liverpool in the summer transfer window.

With the Southampton star set for a Liverpool switch, United will be forced to look elsewhere in the market as they have long been interested in landing the defender.