Fulham are ready to battle Bournemouth in a bid to sign the Genk centre back Jhon Lucumi, according to reports from the Colombian international’s homeland.

Marco Silva is desperate to add defensive recruits in the final weeks of Fulham’s pre-season given that he has only has two senior centre backs currently available during the Whites’ pre-season tour of Portugal. An audacious move for Alessio Romagnoli failed earlier this month and, while Fulham remain interested in Tottenham’s Joe Rodon, they are interested in signing 24 year-old Lucumi, who has less than a year to run on his current contract in Belgium.

Genk are ready to contemplate a summer sale rather than losing the ball-playing centre half on a free transfer but Fulham will need to see off former manager Scott Parker, whose Bournemouth side are also looking for defensive reinforcements ahead of their return to the top flight. Lucumi joined Ghenk in 2018 having made more than a hundred appearances for his hometown club Deportivo Cali and won the Belgian title in his first season with the Smurfs.

Lucumi, who has also lifted the Belgian Cup with Genk, has made 134 appearances in four seasons with Genk and has reportedly featured on Atalanta’s radar, although the Serie A side have yet to make a firm offer for his services. The 6ft 1in defender, who has won five senior caps for his country, has amassed Champions’ League and Europa League experience during his time on the continent and is believed to be intrigued by the prospect of playing Premier League football.