Gelson Martins
Martins scored six goals and assisted 14 in 32 Portuguese league appearances as Sporting finished third

Liverpool are in talks with Sporting Lisbon over a deal for forward Gelson Martins as they fear being priced out of a move for Roma’s Mohamed Salah.

Reports in Portugal claim Martins, 22, is the Reds’ latest target as talks over Salah stalled after Liverpool’s opening offer of £28m was rejected.

Roma are believed to want even more than the £40m touted as the original price tag for the 24-year-old Egypt international – leaving Liverpool to consider moving on alternative targets unless the Italian side compromise.

Liverpool are understood to have now made contact with Sporting for Portugal international Martins, who has a release clause of about £50m.

But this is likely to be negotiable as Sporting have not automatically qualified for the Champions League group stage and are facing financial pressures.

Martins was Sporting’s standout player last season and fits in with the profile of the fast wide player Klopp is seeking as Liverpool prepare to return to the Champions League, having qualified for the play-off round.

Salah, who almost joined Liverpool from FC Basel in January 2014 before moving to Chelsea in an £11m deal, was the first option.

Keita Balde of Lazio and Bayern Munich’s Douglas Costa have also been under consideration from Klopp and his recruitment team.

Source: BBC Sports