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Who is Luka Jovic? The Barcelona-linked striker now making history in the Bundesliga

11:00 PM MYT 29/11/2018
Luka Jovic Eintracht Frankfurt 11112018
With more goals than Robert Lewandowski and Marco Reus, the 20-year-old Serbian striker is becoming one of the most in-demand forwards in Europe

Luka Jovic may be just 20, but he's already a multiple record-breaker.

The forward wrote his name in the history books at Red Star Belgrade by becoming their youngest goalscorer at just 16 and then made Bundesliga history for Eintracht Frankfurt this season when he became the youngest player to net five times in the same game, in a 7-1 rout of Fortuna Dusseldorf.

The precocious talent has since added four more goals to sit joint-top of the Bundesliga scoring chart, leading the race for the Torjagerkanone with Borussia Dortmund's €23 million (£20m/$26m) signing Paco Alcacer and Frankfurt team-mate Sebastian Haller.

Jovic has also struck against Lazio, Marseille and Apollon Limassol in the Europa League to secure Eintracht's progress to the round of 32 with two games remaining.

Such performances have put him on the radar of some of Europe's biggest clubs, with media speculating that both Barcelona and Liverpool are among the teams looking to sign the striker.

The Liverpool interest is little more than empty newspaper talk, with Jurgen Klopp not currently in the market for a young forward. The Reds already have two talented strikers on the books in 2017 Under-20 World Cup Golden Ball winner Dominic Solanke and 2017 U-17 World Cup Golden Boot winner Rhian Brewster.

However, while Liverpool may not be interested in Jovic, the Serbian fits the profile of player Barcelona are currently in the market for and Goal understands that the club are looking to bring in a young striker that they can ease into the senior squad, similar to their signing of Samuel Umtiti in 2016, who exceeded expectations and became the first-choice centre-back partner to Gerard Pique in his first season.

Umtiti showed great promise at Lyon before moving to Barcelona as a 22-year-old, but needed to move to Camp Nou to become a star. The same path could await Jovic, who joined Frankfurt on a two-year loan deal in June 2017, although Eintracht sporting director Bruno Hubner has already confirmed they will exercise the purchase option in the deal, which is between €10m and €12m (£9m-£11m/$11m-$14m).

In his first season in the Bundesliga, Jovic scored eight times in 22 games, but saw the vast majority of his appearances come from the bench. 

He averaged a goal every 115 minutes last season, showing his instincts in front of goal to finish with a conversion rate of 25 per cent. Incredibly, this has improved in 2018-19 to over 32%, while his minutes-per-goal ratio is now at 71.

Amazingly, Jovic started the first three games of the season on the bench for Frankfurt, but an excellent cameo against Hannover saw him finally get a repeated run in the starting XI, forming a brilliant attacking trio with Haller and Ante Rebic, who have 23 goals between them this season.

Kevin-Prince Boateng lined out alongside Jovic last season at Frankfurt and has tipped him for the top.

"There are critics who only see Luka Jovic play once a week," Boateng told Sport Bild. "I have seen him play every day and can, therefore, say that he can become a world-class striker. He has everything to become that.

"You see that in training. He has football in his genes, he's a street footballer, and he has a nose for goal. He scores with his head, right or left foot. He is technically good and can shoot well with both feet. He just has everything a striker needs."

With that kind of all-around goalscoring ability, Jovic is exactly the kind of young talent who could thrive at Barcelona.