Al Ahly manager Sayed Abdel Hafiz has confirmed that West Bromwich Albion have priority over the signing of Ahmed Hegazi should they wish to make their loan deal permanent.
The Egypt international arrived at the Hawthorns in the summer on a season-long loan from Al Ahly. The 26-year-old centre back has impressed at the heart of the Baggies' defence, having started all 15 of their Premier league games.
Hegazi's impressive form has not gone unnoticed and, according to ESPN, Liverpool are among a number of clubs considering a move for the loanee.
The Reds have already conceded 19 goals this season - the most in the top four. Jurgen Klopp and the Liverpool hierarchy are keen to shore up Liverpool's leaky defence and, after failing to secure the signature of Virgil van Dijk in the summer, the club now appear to have turned their attentions to Hegazi as a stop gap solution.
Hafiz has appeared to deliver an early blow to Liverpool's chances of signing the centre-back however.
"West Bromwich Albion have the priority to acquire the services of Hegazi on a permanent basis," Hafiz revealed, as quoted by Goal.
With West Brom having the first option to buy for around £5m, it appears unlikely that Liverpool will be able to secure Hegazi's signature unless Alan Pardew's side turn down the opportunity.
“Liverpool do not have the right to bid higher than West Brom because the player is on loan with the Baggies and they do not need to enter new negotiations," Abdel Hafiz added.