Liverpool will need to up their game if they are to get Nicolo Barella after it emerged that Real Madrid is also interested in the player.
Barella has been one of the key performers for Inter Milan and according to reports from Italian publication Gazzetta dello Sport, Madrid wants the 23-year-old to be the long-term replacement for Luka Modric.
A product of the Cagliari youth academy, Barella rose through the ranks at the Sardinian outfit, establishing himself as one of the most promising young midfielders in Italy before being snapped up by Inter in the summer of 2019, initially on loan before making his move permanent last summer.
Despite his age, the player has managed 25 games in all competitions for Antonio Conte this season scoring two goals and setting up another eight.
With Modric being 35, Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane wants to address the position as early as possible and wants a young player for that role with Arsenal target Houssem Aouar also mentioned as another player that might interest the Laliga giants.
Liverpool wanted the payer as a direct replacement for Georginio Wijnaldum who has refused to sign a new deal and who is strongly being linked with a move to Barcelona in the summer.