Liverpool are reportedly keeping a close eye on the progress of Atalanta goalkeeper Marco Sportiello as manager Brendan Rodgers begins to ponder potential summer improvements to his in-form squad at Anfield.
According to the Daily Mail, Rodgers is especially keen to provide greater competition for current number one Simon Mignolet and the club are believed to be impressed by Sportiello's distribution skills.
The 22-year-old has limited experience at the top level but has established himself as the first-choice 'keeper under manager Edoardo Reja at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia this season, making 25 appearances as Atalanta look to avoid a return to Serie B for the first time since 2011.
Liverpool's apparent desire to sign another goalkeeper is certainly no surprise. Belgium international Mignolet has been frequently subject to huge levels of scrutiny this season, with a number of high-profile errors leading to Rodgers opting to start with Brad Jones for the busy festive period.
A thigh injury sustained by the latter during the Boxing Day win over Burnley led to a recall for Mignolet. He has since managed to recover his reputation and confidence with a string of fine performances that have arguably served as the catalyst for Liverpool's impressive recent run that has provided a huge boost to the club's chances of achieving qualification for the Champions League for the second successive season.
Mignolet's renaissance, a welcome occurrence that appeared to transpire after the former Sunderland man admitted to a harmful tendency to overthink in the heat of certain important situations, has reinforced his position as Rodgers's senior goalkeeper for the current campaign, although it seems highly unlikely that the manager will be content to let the 2015 summer transfer window pass without seeking to strengthen an area of his team that has been debated so publicly and with such fervour in recent months.
A possible swoop for Sportiello would make a great deal of sense, particularly given Rodgers's failure to secure the signing of Alex McCarthy from Championship outfit Reading in August 2014. Liverpool surprisingly lost out to Queen's Park Rangers in that particular battle but such a pursuit, nonetheless, highlighted the ambition to add a young and talented goalkeeper to compete with Mignolet and Jones for a regular first-team berth.
Both AC Milan and Inter Milan are said to retain an interest in Sportiello, though, so Liverpool will probably need to decide quickly whether or not they intend to turn their interest in his services into a formal offer.