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Reds lining up targets to solve problem position

ANALYSIS
By Greg Stobart | Northern Correspondent

Of all Liverpool's ambitions for the summer transfer window, the need for a new left-back will be the most pressing.

Director of football Damien Comolli and manager Kenny Dalglish know the squad needs three or four players who are ready to immediately challenge for the first-team.

But it won't be hard for them to find a left-back to improve on their current options, with Glen Johnson and Danny Wilson being forced to play out of position.

Summer signing Paul Konchesky struggled and was subsequently shipped out on loan to Nottingham Forest in January.

The Reds have most recently been linked with a raid on city rivals Everton for Leighton Baines, who joins the likes of Jose Enrique, Fabio Coentrao and Emilio Izaguirre on the club's shortlist.

Here, Goal.com UK takes a look at the left-backs Liverpool are looking at ahead of the summer transfer window...

Name: Jose Enrique
Club: Newcastle
Nationality: Spanish
Price: £8 million


As Goal.com UK confirmed last month, the Spaniard is right at the top of the Reds' list of targets and there have even been strong rumours on Merseyside that a deal is as good as done.

Newcastle want at least £10m for the 25-year-old, but Enrique's contract expires at the end of next season and buying clubs will have all the power in negotiations.

Liverpool face stern competition from other clubs, with Italian giants AC Milan particularly keen on a player who is recognised first and foremost for his solid defensive attributes.

The former Valencia star has made no secret that he sees his future away from Newcastle and linked up well with Andy Carroll when the Geordie was on Tyneside.

Name: Leighton Baines
Age: 26
Club: Everton
Nationality: English
Price: £12m

Baines has caught the eye this season with some sensational attacking displays for Everton – and the interest from Liverpool is genuine.

As a lifelong Liverpool supporter, Baines would be interested in a move across Stanley Park, where Kenny Dalglish has been highly impressed by his attacking talents.

But Everton are determined not to sell the 26-year-old to their bitter rivals and will price Liverpool out of the market for the player they signed from Wigan in 2007.

Baines has interested other clubs across Europe, but made it clear he was not keen in a move to Bayern Munich when the German club made an approach in the January transfer window.

Name: Fabio Coentrao
Age: 23
Club: Benfica
Nationality: Portuguese
Price: £22m

The Portuguese star is rated as one of the best full-backs in the world and that makes him the most expensive on the market this summer.

Liverpool have a long-standing interest in Coentrao, but the feeling is that they have too much work to do in the transfer market to spend in excess of £20m when cheaper alternatives are available.

The 23-year-old is renowned for his tenacity, energy and endless attacking runs, which would perfectly suit Liverpool's style of play since Dalglish took over.

He is widely expected to leave Benfica this summer, with Real Madrid the most likely option and Barcelona and Manchester United also known admirers. Manchester City and Bayern Munich could also challenge for his signature.

Name: Benoit Tremoulinas
Age: 25        
Club: Bordeaux
Nationality: French
Price: £8m
 
Tremoulinas is an attacking left-back who has been providing assists for fun in French football and has caught the eye of a number of clubs.

Former Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson was interested in the 25-year-old and director of football Damien Comolli has continued to keep tabs on his progress.

Tremoulinas is versatile and also able to play in midfield – but there are questions over how he could cope defensively in the Premier League.

He has attracted interest from Italian sides AC Milan and Juventus but Marseille are favourites to land him in the summer.

Name: Taye Taiwo
Age: 25
Club: Marseille
Nationality: Nigerian
Price: Free Transfer

The Nigerian defender has decided to quit Marseille after seven years at the club and will be available on a free transfer at the end of the season.

A strong, solid defender with a thunderous left foot, Taiwo has been perpetually linked with a move away from France and has now announced his intention to move to a new club.

Liverpool have expressed an interest in Taiwo but could be beaten to the punch by other clubs, with AC Milan and Benfica believed to have already started negotiations.

Premier League sides Aston Villa and Newcastle are also keen on the 25-year-old, who says his preferred destination would be AC Milan.

Name: Emilio Izaguirre
Age: 24
Club: Celtic
Nationality: Honduran
Price: £8m

Liverpool have watched the skilful left-back extensively in the last three months and the feedback is that he would be a star in the Premier League.

The Honduran has caught the eye with his performances in recent Old Firm clashes and was given a further boost when his national team manager said he should play for Barcelona.

Celtic boss Neil Lennon insists Izaguirre is not for sale but the Glasgow club would find it hard to turn down an offer in the region of £8m, particularly knowing the player his eager to test himself at a higher level.

Arsenal have also been linked with a move for the South American, who signed a four-year contract at Celtic Park when he joined from Motagua last summer.

Name: Maynor Figueroa
Age: 27
Club: Wigan
Nationality: Honduran
Price: £6m

Figueroa impressed after arriving at Wigan in 2008 and is highly rated by a number of Premier League managers including Sunderland boss Steve Bruce.

The Honduran is considered a potential option by Liverpool, but there are concerns over his form this season at Wigan, who sit bottom of the top flight.

Name: Nacho Monreal
Age: 26
Club: Osasuna
Nationality: Spanish
Price: £7m

Reports suggest the Spanish international is the latest player to come up on Liverpool's radar and he was watched in person by Comolli last week.

Previously a target for Arsenal, Monreal has impressed for Osasuna this season despite suffering a knee injury in December.

The Reds are unlikely to pursue their interest as, at 27 and a cost of £7m, he does not represent value for money.

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