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 By Mike Whalley

Liverpool target Javi Manquillo loan

Liverpool are pursuing a deal to sign Atletico Madrid defender Javi Manquillo on a season-long loan.

Manager Brendan Rodgers is interested in the 20-year-old right-back as he looks to strengthen his defence, sources have told ESPN FC.

Manquillo, who has represented Spain at Under-20 level, had been heavily linked with a move to Arsenal.

But Liverpool are hopeful that they can secure his signature, initially on loan, but with a view to a permanent deal -- though sources said talks with Atletico are at an early stage.

Javi Manquillo could provide depth for Liverpool's defence at right-back this season, sources say.

Manquillo, who is under contract with the Spanish champions until 2018, is relatively inexperienced at senior level.

Having joined Atletico's youth set-up from neighbours Real Madrid in 2007, he established himself as a regular in their B team, who play in Spain's third tier.

He did, though, make three league appearances last season as Atletico won the title, and has also featured for the club in the Champions League.

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