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Liverpool looking at winter window move for Martin Montoya

Liverpool, 3/1 chances with Coral for a top four finish this term, may sign a replacement for out of contract right back Glen Johnson in the winter window, with Barcelona counterpart Martin Montoya emerging as a top target.

Brendan Rodgers’ reported interest in 23-year-old Montoya stems from quotes attributed to the player’s agent, who said his client will “100 per cent leave” the Nou Camp in January.

Although ex-Brazil international Dani Alves remains ahead of Montoya in Barca’s pecking order, he, like Johnson, is out of contract this coming summer, and there has been no indication from Luis Enrique that a new deal will be on offer.

Barcelona also Alves’ compatriot Douglas, who joined the Catalan giants in the summer. Montoya may have seen this signing as the writing on the wall for his own prospects with the La Liga giants and is thus reportedly seeking new pastures.

Current Reds right back Johnson, meanwhile, said he would not go “crawling” for a new contract at Anfield recently, and that comment may have just pushed him further towards the exit through the famous Shankly Gates.

Montoya has played just one game for Barca all season, while 30-year-old Johnson missed seven matches earlier in the campaign with a hamstring problem.

Rodgers is already well-stocked for Spanish full backs, though, with Jose Enrique, Javi Manquillo and Alberto Moreno all on Liverpool’s books. It is with Atletico Madrid loanee Manquillo, who will be at Anfield until June 2016, that Montoya would compete for a first XI spot on Merseyside long term.

Any move for Montoya would slide Reds academy product Jon Flanagan further down the pecking order, despite the sterling service he provided the club during a defensive injury crisis last season.

With Liverpool 2/1 shots to win a major trophy this term, replacing Johnson with younger legs could boost Rodgers’ chances of scooping silverware.