Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is ready to bid for Newcastle United defender Steven Taylor.

Taylor's stalled new contract talks has alerted Benitez and the Northern Echo says while the Liverpool manager opted not to make a formal offer for Taylor's services during the summer transfer window, sources on Merseyside suggest he will attempt to sign the North-Easterner if the current impasse is not resolved by January 1.

With Sami Hyypia approaching retirement, Benitez is understood to regard Taylor as an ideal back-up to his preferred defensive partnership of Jamie Carragher and Daniel Agger.