This story has been reproduced from today's media. It does not necessarily represent the position of Liverpool Football Club.
Reading are preparing to pip Liverpool to long-term transfer target Thomas Ince.
Reds boss Brendan Rodgers has been trying to land the Blackpool forward for some time, but Reading have also emerged as candidates for the 20-year-old's signature due to their willingness to meet Ince's £8million asking price.
Liverpool had been hoping to land Ince, who left Anfield in 2011 for £250,000, for almost half of Reading's proposed bid.
Ince reached 15 goals for the season having scored a double in Blackpool's victory over Wolves yesterday, and Liverpool were confident of recapturing their former player for as little as £4.5million.
But it now appears they will have to improve that offer given the competition. The Royals had been trailing Andrey Arshavin, but the club's Russian owner Anton Zingarevich has now turned his attention away from his countryman towards England Under 21 star Ince, according to the Sunday People.
Reading manager Brian McDermott is keen to add some weight to his attack to secure the relegation strugglers another season in the English top flight.