Liverpool are lining up a bid for Fulham teenager Patrick Roberts, according to what claims as an exclusive this morning.

The Premier League club are keen to beat their Premier League rivals to the signature of the highly-rated England youth international and would be willing to loan Roberts back to his present employers. Brendon Rodgers is a known admirer of Roberts’ talented and has seen previous tentative approaches for the 17 year-old rebuffed.

Roberts, who helped the England Under 17s win the European Championship this summer with a string of superb performances, has sparkled in two substitute appearances in Fulham’s first two games in the Championship. He made his first team debut at Manchester City last season and was one of the stand-out performers as Fulham’s Under 18 side reached the FA Youth Cup final last season.

Liverpool’s interest follows heavily rumoured attention from the likes of Manchester United and Arsenal, which led Fulham to reportedly place a £15m price tag on Roberts in the spring. Felix Magath has spoken in glowing terms about the young winger’s potential but the very real prospect of approaches from a host of top English and European clubs highlights one of the pitfalls of the German coach’s promotion of a number of youth-team prospects this season. Even if Fulham are able to ward off the attentions of their suitors at first, failure to return to the top flight could see the best of the talent seek to test themselves at the highest level sooner rather than later.