Real Madrid are keeping in contact with Liverpool ace Steven Gerrard while he leads England at the World Cup. AS says Real have had several conversations with Gerrard's agent, Struan Marshall, and knows the midfielder is keen to pull on a Real shirt. However, Liverpool's €30 million-plus asking price is proving a stumbling block.

Real are reluctant to spend big on 30 year-old Gerrard, with Benfica also demanding a similar fee for Angel di Maria.

In the event Liverpool refuse to drop their valuation, Real will turn to alternatives, including Athletic Bilbao youngster Javi Martinez and Inter Milan's Thiago Motta.