Liverpool have apparently missed out on Barcelona youngster Adama Traore, with reports suggesting Aston Villa are on the verge of securing a deal for the winger.
The Reds have been linked with a move for the Spain U21 international, and according to Catalan radio station RAC 1 the club's officials recently visited the country to finalise a contract with the player, who has previously been linked with Manchester United.
Apart from Liverpool, Aston Villa and Stoke City were also keeping tabs on Adama, who is rated as one of the brightest prospects in the La Liga club's famed La Masia academy.
Reports say that the young Barcelona winger will travel to England on 12 August as he prepares to complete his proposed £7m ($10.8m) move to Villa Park.
Stoke, who already have four former Barcelona players on their books, were said to be leading the race for his signature, but the arrival of club-record signing Xherdan Shaqiri has seen them drop out of the race and hand Villa the initiative.
Tim Sherwood has been recruiting heavily following the departures of Christian Benteke and Fabian Delph, who left the club this summer to join Liverpool and Manchester City respectively. Last week the former Tottenham manager acknowledged the player's talent but refused to get drawn into talks about an imminent move.
"He's a good player, but at the moment he's Barcelona's player," Sherwood said, as quoted by the Daily Telegraph.
The 46-year-old gaffer is still keen to add more players and is reportedly on the trail of Tottenham duo Andros Townsend and Emmanuel Adebayor.
The former will cost the Villains around £12m, which could prize them out from a move, while the latter will cost significantly less, but his wage demands could be a stumbling block for Sherwood's team.
Sky Sports reported that Adebayor was close to completing a switch to Villa, with the player set to undergo a medical, but Sherwood admitted that discussions were held, but that nothing was agreed, while Mauricio Pochettino has made it clear that he does not feature in the manager's plans for the 2015/16 campaign.