Liverpool are lining up a sensational bid for Barcelona striker David Villa. The People says the Spanish superstar was wanted by the Reds 18 months ago when he left Valencia, but Barca beat off competition from Anfield and Real Madrid to clinch his signature.

However, Villa's situation at the Nou Camp has changed and his place is no longer guaranteed in the starting line-up.

And Liverpool will go for the player again next summer if they return to the Champions League.

The player's contract with Barcelona runs until 2014 and contains a mind-boggling buy-out clause of £170million. But an offer in the region of £40m might tempt the Catalan giants.