Transfer news: Chelsea plan to hijack Liverpool's bid for Mohamed Salah - reports

Liverpool face stiff competition from rivals Chelsea for Basel's Egyptian midfielder

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The Independent Football

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has launched an audacious late £11m bid for FC Basel forward Mohamed Salah despite a move to Liverpool appearing to be a formality.

The Portuguese manager has previous after out-manoeuvring former Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre-Villas Boas to securing the £30m acquisition of Willian last summer.

Liverpool, on the other hand, have held a keen interest in the Egypt international for a matter of months and talks had reached an advanced stage last night.

With Juan Mata on the verge of joining Manchester United for £37m, however, the Blues are prepared to part with the cash required to sign Salah as an immediate replacement.

According to the Daily Mail, Basle are sensing a bidding war and have now asked for £16m for the 21-year-old.

Liverpool are reluctant to go beyond £12m and talks were ongoing last night for a player who has scored 17 goals in 27 games for Egypt.

Salah impressed against Mourinho's men in the Champions League earlier this season, scoring in both of group stage games, including the winner in Switzerland.