Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is lining up a bid for Middlesbrough winger Stewart Downing.

The News of the World says Liverpool will turn their attention to Middlesbrough ace Stewart Downing if they fail to land Aston Villa's Gareth Barry.

The England winger recently signed a new deal at the Riverside but a £12million move from Rafa Benitez would lure him to Merseyside.

Downing, 23, is among several players being monitored by Kop boss Benitez as he seeks to improve his squad on the flanks.