Villa Park will only let star go to Anfield for right price.
Aston Villa will demand £19million for winger Stewart Downing meaning Liverpool will have to up their bid if the want to sign the star.
The Reds have had two bids – of £12million and £15million – turned down for the 26-year-old, but boss Kenny Dalglish is desperate to sign him.
The England international signed for Villa from Middlesbrough for £12million two years ago, even though he was injured for the first three months.
But last season Downing was in outstanding form and was Villa’s player of the year.
Downing will return to pre-season training at Villa Park on Friday but it is unlikely he will start the new campaign in the Midlands.
New Villa manager Alex McLeish would like to keep hold of Downing after losing the services of Ashley Young to Manchester United.
But if the player is to leave, Villa will hold out for what they consider to be a fair price for the former Middlesbrough player.
A source close to Villa said: “The club have made it known what they regard as a fair price for Stewart Downing, if he is to be sold.”
Downing has two years remaining of his contract but made it clear last month that he would not be signing a new deal.
“My agent had a meeting with the club – just one meeting – and he just felt it was the right time not to sign my contract,” he told Press Association Sport:
“I’ve still got two years to go, so I’ve still got a long time to go, so I just decided to leave it as it is.
“Will I be at Villa next season? I’m not sure.”