By London correspondent Tony Hughes
Jurgen Klopp has spoken to Croatian wonderkid Ante Coric in a bid to lure him to Liverpool, according to a report.
Spurs are also on the trail of the 19-year-old attacking midfielder, who has been likened in Croatia to Spanish playmaker David Silva for his style of play.
According to Italian transfer website Tuttomercatoweb, the Londoners are in negotiations with Dinamo Zagreb to secure the signing of the teenager and have offered £3.1million.
But now the Mail claim that Liverpool manager Klopp has made personal contact with Coric in an attempt to persuade him to move to Anfield.
It is said Klopp used a similar tactic to help persuade Marko Grujic to join Liverpool from Red Star Belgrade and that Coric has been charmed by the Liverpool manager’s personality.
A battle is now growing between the Merseysiders and Spurs to sign the youngster, who is a regular for Croatia Under-21s and was a key member of Dinamo Zagreb’s title-winning team this season.
Coric made 41 appearances for Dinamo this season, scoring five goals and supplying six assists from his central playmaking role.
The Croatian club accept they face a battle to hand on to the youngster and their bid to drive up the price is helped by interest from a number of Premier League outfits.
Croatian newspaper SN claimed earlier this week that Tottenham were willing to pay up to £10million for Coric, while the Merseyside giants could be willing to trump the Londoners and spend £11.4million on the player, who is contracted to Dinamo until 2020.
In other Tottenham transfer news, the club jetted out on a £30million mission last weekend as they stepped up their pursuit of a priority target.