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Italian rivals consider Liverpool favourites for Porto midfielder Fernando

Liverpool are chasing Porto midfielder Fernando.

Reds chief Damien Comolli has been tracking the Brazilian this season and is now ready to pull the trigger in January following the injury suffered by Lucas Leiva and concerns persisting over Steven Gerrard's fitness.

Fernando, dubbed 'The Octopus' in Portugal, is rated at £14 million by Porto, which need to make one major sale in the winter market to help balance the books.

Italian sources say Liverpool are favourites for his signature, with Inter Milan and AS Roma also keen.

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