Liverpool confident Arsenal target will replace Gerrard

Liverpool are confident that they will be able to draft in Manchester City’s James Milner in at the end of the season, according to reports from ESPN.

The versatile England international is set to be a free agent in under six months’ time and is yet to agree a new contract with the reigning Premier League champions.

Limited first-team opportunities and being shifted around Manuel Pellgerini’s XI – he played as a striker recently – have led to suggestions that Milner may see his future away from the Etihad Stadium, with regular paying time tempting for the 29-year-old.

This has led to links with Arsenal and Liverpool, with the latter confident they can draft him in to ease the blow of Steven Gerrard’s departure – the veteran skipper will join LA Galaxy at the end of the season.

Brendan Rodgers is thought to see the hard-working former Leeds man as a good option, with his work rate and commitment standout characteristics.

Milner is free to discuss a pre-contract deal with foreign sides this month, but the Merseysiders will have to wait until his deal expires to pursue him officially.