Liverpool owners firm in pursuit of Aston Villa’s coveted striker

If anything highlighted Liverpool’s dire need to purchase a world class centre-forward this summer, the deployment of two lightweight midfielders at the sharp end of the pitch during an embarrassing loss to Stoke was it.

Luckily for the masses of gloomy-faced Reds supporters, club owners Fenway Sports Group look ready to move in the market and back one of their beleaguered manager’s top transfer targets, Christian Benteke.

It’s no secret that Brendan Rodgers yearns to bring Aston Villa’s talisman to Anfield after badly failing in his mission to replace his own one last summer.

Clearly Villa will be intent on demanding a fee in proportion with Benteke’s goal-scoring prowess and early indications suggest the Belgian would fetch at least £20m.

When Rodgers looks back at the paltry goal returns of Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert, who cost as much combined during last summer’s ill-fated splurge, such sums should hold the minimal of deterrence.

Benteke may have suffered in his second season after a landmark debut campaign in England, but this can mainly be attributed to the long-term injuries, which have since been resolved.

Now under Tim Sherwood’s guidance, the sizeable striker has notched 12 times in as many Villa appearances since the first game of March – taking him onto 15 for the season ahead of the FA Cup final.

After the season just gone at Anfield, it’s no wonder that the chance of attaining such figures for themselves is high on the agenda for Fenway Sports Group and Liverpool.

Benteke could now take his Villa bow in the 2014/15 domestic curtain call at Wembley, where the Belgium international is a 7/1 shot to open the FA Cup final scoring.

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