Liverpool have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of Denis Cheryshev after learning that Real Madrid will not sell the winger until they obtain a replacement.
Cheryshev, who impressed on loan at Villarreal last season, is on the radar of Brendan Rodgers as the Reds manager plans for life after Raheem Sterling.
The Anfield contract rebel has been the subject of two failed bids from Manchester City, but is still expected to move to Eastlands in a £50m deal.
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Reports have claimed that Rodgers wants to spend £10m-15m of that on Cheryshev, who is likely to find first-team opportunities hard to come by at the Bernabeu next season.
But new Los Blancos boss Rafael Benitez is keen to have strength in depth and will not allow the 24-year-old Russian to leave until he fills his place in the squad.
Madrid were once touted with an interest in Sterling, but are now focusing on other targets.