Friday, July 08, 2011

Dalglish Plots £45m Triple Signing After Adam Purchase

Kenny Dalglish is targeting a winger, keeper and a left-back signing in the transfer period, after completing a deal for Charlie Adam, according to the Daily Mirror.

Stewart Downing is reportedly now Dalglish’s number one target, with Liverpool having an offer of £15 million for Downing rejected.

While Liverpool was in the mix for Downing’s former teammate Ashley Young, Manchester United was able to outbid their rivals, and Dalglish is desperate to not let the same thing happen with Downing.

Liverpool is considering raising their bid for the star, with Aston Villa reportedly insisting that Downing is worth no less than £20 million.

Dalglish is also aggressively pursuing Newcastle full-back Jose Enrique, and despite the star garnering interest from Arsenal, Liverpool are looking to sign the Spaniard to fill a long standing left-back problem at Merseyside.

Centre-half Scott Dann is also in talks with Liverpool, with the Birmingham man a boyhood Liverpool fan who grew up in Merseyside.

Liverpool’s owners Fenway Sports Group have set a transfer policy of signing younger players with long term potential, and Dalglish and director of football Damien Comolli both reportedly feel that Dann, at 24-years-old, fits this bill.

And at £10 million, Dann could be the cheapest player Dalglish purchases this summer.

Liverpool Complete Deal For Charlie Adam

Liverpool has completed the signing of midfielder Charlie Adam from Blackpool.

The Scot, 25, signed a contract on Thursday after successfully completing a medical, the club's official website said. The length of the contract or the fee have not yet been disclosed.

"I am absolutely delighted to be here," Adam told

"It has been a long process but now I can't wait to get started and hopefully this will be a successful period in my career and in the club's history."

He added: "Liverpool is a massive club with terrific players and a terrific manager.

"I see this as the perfect development for me to come here, play with such wonderful players and hopefully help the team to win trophies, because that's the most important thing.

"I'm delighted to be able to walk out on the same pitch as some of the players here.

"There are good players at the club, top, top players who I want to learn from. I want to become a better player and hopefully bring something to the team.

"Hopefully we can have a successful period because it's been missing now for a couple of years.

"At the end of the day you get judged on trophies and as a footballer you want to win as many as you can.

"This club has had a lot of success over the years, so let's get back to doing that."

In the January transfer window the Reds had two bids - the second worth £6.5m - rejected by the Seasiders, who were reportedly holding out for £9m.

But Liverpool reopened talks at the end of the season for a player who had only 12 months left on his contract.

Adam, who was on the shortlist for the PFA Player of the Year award last season, joined Blackpool from Scottish Premier League club Rangers for £500,000 in 2009.

The Scottish champions will now receive an additional cash windfall as they are due 10% of any sell-on fee.

Adam was close to joining Tottenham before time ran out in the January transfer window earlier this year.

He becomes boss Kenny Dalglish's second signing since they finished sixth in the Premier League last season.

Another midfielder, Jordan Henderson, arrived from Sunderland in June for a reported £20m.

Charlie Adam Eyes Silverware After Completing Liverpool Move

Charlie Adam is keen to help bring trophies back to Anfield after finally completing his move to Liverpool. The 25-year-old was a transfer target of Kenny Dalglish almost from the moment the manager took over from Roy Hodgson in early January.

After two failed bids in that window, when Blackpool were keen to keep their captain for their fight against relegation, Liverpool returned with an offer of around £7m and after his medical was completed without any problems Adam was able to sign a long-term contract.

The Scotland international is keen to get into pre-season training and start looking at how he can contribute to the club winning their first silverware since the 2006 FA Cup. "I am absolutely delighted to be here," Adam said. "It has been a long process but now I can't wait to get started and hopefully this will be a successful period in my career and in the club's history.

"I see this as the perfect development for me to come here, play with such wonderful players and hopefully help the team to win trophies, because that's the most important thing. I'm delighted to be able to walk out on the same pitch as some of the players here.

"There are good players at the club, top, top players who I want to learn from. I want to become a better player and hopefully bring something to the team. Hopefully we can have a successful period because it's been missing now for a couple of years.

"At the end of the day you get judged on trophies and as a footballer you want to win as many as you can. This club has had a lot of success over the years, so let's get back to doing that."

The role of Dalglish in securing the signature of his fellow Scot cannot be overestimated. He identified Adam very early on as a player he wanted and on Thursday even drove the midfielder into the club's Melwood training ground for the medical.

Dalglish's influence was marked when he took charge in January, turning performances and results around, and that did not go unnoticed by Adam. "Liverpool is a massive club with terrific players and a terrific manager," Adam said. "You have seen since the new manager came in the forward strides that have been made. Kenny has a terrific respect from players and people in the game.

"He is a wonderful manager and it's an honour to be able to say I'm going to be able to play for Liverpool. I tasted Anfield last year, scoring here [in Blackpool's 2-1 win] was an unbelievable feeling and hopefully I've got many more days like that as a Liverpool player."

Liverpool Prepare New Stewart Downing Bid

Liverpool will follow up the signing of Charlie Adam with an improved offer for Stewart Downing - but they still face a fight to persuade Aston Villa manager Alex McLeish to sell the England winger.

Villa turned down Liverpool's opening £15m bid and BBC Sport understands they are refusing even to consider a price for Downing, despite speculation that they will sell for £20m.

Downing is expected to hold further talks about his future with McLeish on Friday and Liverpool's improved offer, likely to be around £18m, could even have arrived by then.

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish is keen to make the 26-year-old his third signing of the summer after concluding a deal for Sunderland's Jordan Henderson and agreeing a fee for Blackpool's Adam, and the player is eager to make the move to Anfield, particularly since talks on an extended contract at Villa Park stalled.

Dalglish leads Liverpool on an eight-day Far East tour on Sunday and would hope to have a deal wrapped up by then but Villa are in no mood to part easily with Downing, after already losing Ashley Young to Manchester United for £16m.

Villa are prepared to take a hardline policy on Liverpool's interest in Downing, who has two years left on his contract, and insist they do not want to sell, dismissing suggestions that there is a price that would persuade them to change their stance.

McLeish said: "He had a magnificent season last year and really came to full maturity as a top player. I understand why there are teams interested in him and that is what happens when you play well consistently.

"His performances last season were top drawer. That's why he's not for sale. The club doesn’t want to sell him. I spoke to him briefly last week and I intend speaking to him again when all the lads are back in for training."

Downing, who joined Villa from Middlesbrough for £12m in July 2009, may well have to force the issue by putting in a transfer request if McLeish continues to block any further moves by Liverpool.

Liverpool Switch Focus To Arsenal Star With Player Exchange Deal Mooted

Liverpool are looking at putting together a bid for Arsenal's Theo Walcott after becoming increasingly frustrated in their attempts to land a top class winger.

The Reds saw arch-rivals Manchester United beat them to the signature of their number one target, Ashley Young ,who joined from Aston Villa for £15m. They were also in the hunt for Rennes Sylvain Marveaux but their failure to make a firm offer meant saw Newcastle take advantage of their hesitation and snap up the Frenchman.

Stewart Downing has emerged as an option though Villa has already rejected a £15m offer from Anfield. A second bid is thought to be forthcoming but manager Alex McLeish is adamant that the player is not for sale, meaning that Liverpool will either have offer a vastly inflated price or hope that Downing himself agitates for a move.

Aaron Lennon has been another target with the Liverpool trying to benefit from a reported rift between the England international and his manager at Tottenham, Harry Redknapp, though any differences of opinion appear to have been resolved. The Merseysiders are now considering a move for Walcott after the player was linked with a move to Chelsea on the weekend.

The 22-year-old is understood to be happy with life at the Emirates Stadium though that could change should both Samir Nasri and Cecs Fabregas follow Gael Clichy out of the exit door, as expected. Arsene Wenger would surely not countenance selling a fourth first team regular though Liverpool will attempt to sweeten the deal by including Joe Cole as a makeweight. While the former Chelsea star has been in desperately poor form for the past 12 months, Wenger is known to be an admirer of the trickster and a return to familiar surroundings in London could see the two-time Premier League winner find his magical feet again.

Liverpool Planning Raid For Argentine Defender

Liverpool is reportedly considering contesting Juventus in the race for Catania defender Matias Silvestre.

According to Italian TV service Mediaset Premium, the Reds and Juve are both pursuing the Argentine centre-back, who could leave the Stadio Angelo Massimino for around €5 million.

Silvestre's price-tag is tempered by the fact he only has one year to remain on his contract, so Catania may be forced to cash-in should Liverpool come knocking.

Catania general director Pietro Lo Monaco recently claimed Liverpool had lodged an interest in signing the 26-year-old, but it would now appear Juventus will try to scupper any potential move to Anfield.

Although the acquisition of more potent goalscoring options is a summer priority for Liverpool, the Merseysiders are also thought to be keen to bolster their back-line - with Silvestre one of several candidates to join the club.

Liverpool has also been linked with versatile France international Mamadou Sakho, while Scott Dan is also on the Anfield radar.

However, a more pressing issue for Liverpool is the signing of a new left-back, with Newcastle's Jose Enrique the favourite to join Kenny Dalglish's side.

Liverpool To Make £12m Brazilian Star Bid

Liverpool is considering a bid for highly-rated Lyon winger Michel Bastos.

The 27-year-old Brazilian say a proposed deal to Juventus collapse and now Liverpool are prepared to meet the £12m asking price for the player.

Bastos can play on the left-wing or at left-back, two positions Reds boss Kenny Dalglish is eager to strengthen ahead of next season.

The Brazil flyer has earned rave reviews for his performances in Ligue 1, and French sources claim the Anfield club has already made contact with Lyon.

Dalglish is determined to sign Bastos, having endured a frustrating summer so far despite the arrival of Jordan Henderson from Sunderland for £20million.

Italian Interest In Insua

The agent of Liverpool defender Emiliano Insua claims Roma hold an interest in his client.

The 22-year-old spent last season away from Anfield as he took in a loan spell at Galatasaray.

He has since returned to England, but remains on the fringes of the first-team set-up with the Reds.

That has fuelled speculation that he could soon be on the move again, with a number of clubs reported to be keen on striking a deal.

Fiorentina and Palermo have been heavily linked with the Argentine in the past, with it felt that his game would be ideally suited to the Italian game.

Roma are the latest Serie A outfit to consider an approach, and Insua's agent has revealed that an agreement could be reached with Liverpool.

"We have spoken to Roma sporting director Walter Sabatini," Rodrigo Vilarino told

"The situation at the moment is on stand-by.

"I don't know how much he would cost, that all depends on Liverpool."

West Ham To Make £7.5m Bid For Liverpool Pair

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce is preparing an ambitious bid to sign Liverpool pair Joe Cole and Paul Konchesky as the new Upton Park boss looks to improve his squad ahead of the coming battle to secure and instant promotion back to the Premier League.

The Hammers boss has already snapped up Newcastle United captain Kevin Nolan and has now set his sights on two Anfield players who appear to be surplus to requirements at the Merseyside club. Allardyce will reportedly be handed the funds to secure both players as well as cover Joe Cole’s large salary demands as co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold look to fund moves they feel will help their chances of a lucrative return to the top tier.

Liverpool boss Kenny Dalglish seems likely to accept offers for both players as neither figured in the Scot’s plans following his arrival as replacement for Roy Hodgson back in January.

Left back Konchesky was farmed out on loan to Nottingham Forest where he performed consistently and helped the City Ground side to the play-offs. The 30 year old defender spent two years at West Ham during which time his performances helped the East London side to an FA Cup Final place.

Joe Cole had a tough first season at Liverpool, being sent off in his opening Premier League fixture at home to Arsenal and barely managed a start once Dalglish had arrived on the scene. The former Chelsea attacking midfielder did of course start his career at West Ham racking up over 150 appearances before making his move to Stamford Bridge back in 2003.

An offer of £7.5m may well be accepted by Liverpool as they look to freshen up their squad ahead of a push to reclaim a top four spot. The club’s new owners have funded moves to sign Jordan Henderson and Charlie Adam already this summer and may well look to help balance the books and removing big earners from the payroll makes a great deal of sense, especially if said big earners are not first team starters who only cost a combined fee of £3.5m in the first place.

Stephen Darby Completes Season-Long Loan Move To Rochdale

Liverpool have confirmed that defender Stephen Darby has joined League One side Rochdale on loan until the end of the 2011-12 season.

The 22-year-old spent last season on loan at Notts County, where he made 22 appearances after joining in November 2010.

The youngster is behind England international Glen Johnson and Martin Kelly in the pecking order for the right-back berth at Anfield, and a move to the Spotland Stadium will give him a chance of gaining further first-team experience.

The defender has made six appearances for the Reds, with his last coming against FK Rabotnicki in a Europa League Qualifier in Macedonia.

Darby becomes Dale manager Steve Eyre's fifth signing following the transfers of Marc Twaddle, Ashley Grimes, Simon Hackney and Andrew Tutte.

Liverpool Facing Name Game In Quest For New Home

Liverpool is more open to the prospect of leaving Anfield for a new state-of-the-art arena in nearby Stanley Park, but face a race against time to find a lucrative naming rights partner to help offset the cost of the project.

Club officials have acquired a three-month extension from Liverpool City Council on whether to take up the 999-year lease on the site, which is in the shadow of the current ground.

Moving to a new stadium is now the preferred option of Liverpool’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, and planning permission is in place for two designs.

Building a new 60,000 capacity ground would cost around £300million and FSG want to secure a deal with a naming rights partner to share the financial burden before taking the final step of progressing with the Stanley Park blueprint.

If a suitable naming rights package cannot be secured, there remains the prospect of refurbishing the existing site, which is why Liverpool will leave their options open.

The search for a partner comes with Manchester City’s tie-up with Etihad and is being headed by FSG’s Boston think-tank, which also secured the prospective £25m-a-year kit deal with Warrior which is in line to replace adidas from the 2012-2013 season.

Sam Kennedy, president of FSG, confirmed recently they were “combing the earth” looking for a tie up with a blue chip company. “If we were able to get a naming rights partner that would certainly factor into our analysis and will help as we look to make a decision on a refurb [of Anfield] versus a new build,” he said in May.

“That process has just gotten under way and we are out there talking to folks around the world.”

The total sponsorship package at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium, understood to include both stadium naming rights for 15 years and shirt sponsorship for eight years, it is worth around £100m.

Galatasaray’s new Turk Telekom Arena attracted naming rights worth around £7m-a-year and Liverpool will get to see at first hand the spectacular stadium after arranging to go to Istanbul, the scene of their 2005 European Cup triumph, for a friendly on Thursday, July 28. Liverpool would ideally seek around £100m for naming rights alone, but are aware the financial climate and time factors are against them.

It is understood Liverpool asked for a longer extension, but the City Council were only prepared to grant three months given the years of delays, under different owners and regimes.

Even Housing Minister Grant Shapps has weighed into the issue by calling on the club to make a decision because of the implication it has on the regeneration of north Liverpool area. “There’s a really urgent decision to be made there, and in fact if that decision’s not made, it holds back regeneration,” said Shapps. “But it’s not about has the government got hundreds of millions of pounds to put into this.”

FSG asked a group of Boston architects to do a study into revamping Anfield, but it was not the same team that worked successfully on refurbishing Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox baseball team it also owns.

Leaving Anfield, the club’s home since 1892, would not be taken lightly, but renovation would mean closing down a stand during a Premier League season and there would be a huge amount of lost income associated with a project that could take four years.

If they abort the Stanley Park project, Liverpool would also have to pay back £8.2m in European funding. Planning permission is in place for two designs. One from Manchester-based architects AFL, who have done work on Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge and also Dallas-based HKS, appointed by former co-owner Tom Hicks.

LFC And Laureate In New Partnership

Laureate Online Education, a leading provider of higher education qualifications, and Liverpool FC have announced an affiliation on a global basis.

The partnership will see Laureate use Liverpool FC's online channels in order to offer fans an accessible and affordable opportunity to study and gain a degree level qualification.

"Laureate Online Education, who works in partnership with the University of Liverpool and is proud to affiliate its online degrees with Liverpool FC. This Partnership brings together two of the great icons of the city of Liverpool with a combined history spanning over 200 years," says Leon James, Laureate's Vice-President of Marketing.

Ian Ayre, Liverpool FC's Managing Director added: "We are honored to be working in partnership with Laureate to provide our fans around the world with the opportunity to study from home and gain a qualification from the University of Liverpool. We are fortunate to have such a world class educational institution on Liverpool FC's doorstep and fans can now gain a qualification from this institution without the expense of travel and living costs associated with moving to a new city. Our website engages around four million fans monthly and we now have in excess of six million fans on our official Facebook site which presents Laureate with a huge audience."

Reds Returning To Istanbul

Liverpool has confirmed they are set to make an emotional return to Istanbul this summer when they take on Galatasaray in a pre-season friendly on Thursday, July 28.

The Reds will travel to Turkey's largest city as part of their preparations for the 2011-12 campaign.

Istanbul was, of course, the scene of Liverpool's dramatic 2005 Champions League final triumph over AC Milan.

Milan Baros figured for the Reds on that unforgettable night and now plies his trade for Galatasaray, who finished eighth in the Turkish Super Lig last season.

The two teams last met in the group stage of the 2006-07 Champions League. Both encounters finished 3-2 to the home side, with Liverpool prevailing at Anfield before Gala clinched victory in Istanbul.

The game will be played at the Turk Telekom Arena, which opened in January of this year and has its own entry in the Guinness Book of World Records as the loudest stadium on the planet having recorded a noise level of 131.76 decibels during a match with Fenerbahce on March 18.

The friendly is one of six Liverpool have announced as they gear up for the new season.