By North-west correspondent Alex Stevens
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Liverpool are confident of beating Arsenal to the signing of Leicester left-back Ben Chilwell, according to a report.
The Merseysiders are in the market for someone to compete with first-choice Alberto Moreno on the left side of the defence.
According to the Telegraph, Liverpool have identified Chilwell as a priority signing and are ready to open talks with Leicester in the coming days.
It is said that the England Under-20 international is keen to make a move to Anfield even though there is also strong interest from Arsenal.
The Gunners bid £5million plus £2million of add-ons for Chilwell in the January window and Liverpool will have to be prepared to beat that to land the 19-year-old.
A Liverpool recruitment source has told Football Insider that Chilwell is on a shortlist of potential new left-backs that also includes teenager Celtic’s Kieran Tierney, Lorient’s Raphael Guerreiro, PSV Eindhoven’s Jetro Willems and Cologne’s Jonas Hector.
Leicester have opened discussions with Chilwell’s representatives about extending his contract, which runs until the summer of 2017.
The Premier League champions are ready to up the academy graduate’s deal to a reported £18,000-a-week in a bid to keep him.
However, Chilwell has decided to sit tight and wait, and with just 12 months remaining on his deal, the likelihood of a sale is increasing.
The highly rated Foxes Academy graduate spent the first half of the season on loan at Huddersfield and then started both legs of Leicester’s FA Cup third-round clash against Tottenham but he has not played since 20 January.
In other Liverpool transfer news, the Merseysiders could finalise two landmark deals within the next week.