Leicester City midfielder James Maddison says one of the players he is seeking to emulate is ex-Liverpool man Philippe Coutinho.
Maddison was linked with the Reds after shining for Norwich in the Championship in 2017/18 but went onto join the Foxes.
Those rumours have resurfaced now, though, with the 22-year-old’s form increasingly impressive.
Even this week, pundit Noel Whelan urged Liverpool to swoop for the Englishman.
Maddison’s goal contributions from midfield – he has scored eight and set-up nine since arriving in the top-flight – would be a valuable asset, filling the void left by Coutinho’s departure.
And intriguingly, he says that Brendan Rodgers wants him to emulate the Brazilian, his import at Anfield.
“I’ve seen more of Wayne Rooney because, watching him, I was a bit older and understood more about the game,” he told The Athletic, via Football365, when asked about his footballing influences. “He dominated the Premier League for years; an unbelievable player.
“More current era, there’s David Silva who’s like a fine wine, getting older but better and better.
“And, of course, Philippe Coutinho, who was at Liverpool when I was in the lower divisions. He was outstanding.
“The manager and I have spoken about that role he played in his team, and how sometimes he used Coutinho as a No 8 and other times, off the left in different games.
“He had the skill set to do well in those roles and now he’s getting me to play there. But I believe I have the versatility to mix it up.”
Maddison has bags of promise and could find another level surrounded by world-class team-mates.
It would be a hugely exciting signing, but the price tag would almost certainly be eye-watering.
Leicester demanded £80million for Harry Maguire over the summer, and will probably ask for even more in this case.