Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Suarez Wants Out In January

Liverpool striker Luis Suarez will attempt to leave the club in January, Anfield sources told SportsDirect News.

The Uruguayan, who tried to quit the club during the summer and who was the subject of failed bids from Premier League rivals Arsenal, has apologized for publicly stating his discontent at the club.

However, sources at the Anfield club said Suarez wants to "facilitate an amicable exit" in the new year and apologising to manager Brendan Rodgers and the fans was the best way to do it.

"Scratch beneath the surface and we all know Luis is unhappy at Liverpool - that's not changed overnight," a source said.

"He knows he has to get the fans back on his side if he has a chance of leaving otherwise it will be back to square one. He wants an easy life for the next few months."

Suarez is currently serving a 10-match ban for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic last season.

Costa Tempted By Liverpool Switch

Brazilian striker Diego Costa admits he came close to signing for Liverpool but his connections to Atletico Madrid proved too strong.

The 24-year-old was reported to be the subject of a late £22million bid by Brendan Rodgers in the closing stages of this summer's transfer window.

Costa, who started his career with Portuguese side Braga, conceded a move to Anfield was on the cards but ultimately chose to reward the loyalty Atletico have displayed to him.

"I was close to leaving, Liverpool are a great team," he told Mundo Deportivo. "But after fighting so hard and overcoming difficulties to get my place at Atletico, how could I leave?"

Liverpool has since been linked with a January bid for the forward, but Costa remains adamant that he will be staying at the Estadio Vincente Calderon, where he is relishing the UEFA Champions League challenge ahead.

Tello Snubbed Summer Liverpool Switch

Barcelona youngster Cristian Tello has revealed he rejected advances from Liverpool this summer, instead opting to fight for his place at the Nou Camp.

The highly-rated 22-year-old has progressed through the youth ranks at the Catalan club and despite featuring 29 times under Tito Vilanova last term, remains behind the likes of Ibrahim Afellay, Pedro Rodriguez and Alexis Sanchez, as well as new signing Neymar, in the Barca pecking order.

And Tello has now revealed Liverpool were keen admirers during the summer transfer window, but he snubbed their advances in order to earn his place at the Nou Camp.

‘I always wanted to stay here,’ he said.

‘The coach has confidence in me, I’m happy and ready to play.

‘I knew that Liverpool was interested in me, but I never thought about leaving.’

Tello starred for Spain’s Under-21 side as they were crowned European champions this summer and has made two substitute appearances for Barcelona so far this season.

Arsenal And Liverpool To Battle For Barcelona Ace

Barcelona defender Martin Montoya could be on his way out of the Nou Camp after his agent declares he is unlikely to sign a new contract with the Catalan giants.

Arsenal and Liverpool were taking interest in the right back over the summer but turned their attentions elsewhere after it was thought the 22-year-old was to agree a long-term deal with the club.

But fresh reports have emerged that Montoya is not prepared to wait in line for first team football any longer with Daniel Alves occupying the position.

His agent, Jose Maria Orobitg, has opened the door for a Premier League move for Montaya.

He was quoted in the Express telling Sky Italia: “For the moment he is under contract with FC Barcelona until the end of the season.

"However, the contract extension has still not arrived.

"We have talked but there is no certainty that Martin Montoya would hold down a first-team spot, because right now Daniel Alves closes the door.

"The transfer window is closed, but I can tell you that the contract extension may not be successful.”

And Orobitg admits that interest in the Spanish hot-prospect is rife around Europe.

"In the past, Inter Milan, Napoli, Bayer Leverkusen, Dortmund and Liverpool were interested.

"Anything could happen between now and June."

Montoya has emerged through the youth system at Barcelona and managed to achieve 15 league appearances for the La Liga winning side last campaign scoring one goal.

Napoli Line Up Skrtel Loan Switch

Napoli hopes to conclude a loan deal for Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel, according to reports in Italy.

Since taking over as Napoli manager Rafael Benitez, has already signed one of his former charges at previous side Liverpool in Pepe Reina.

The Spanish goalkeeper arrived in Naples on a temporary deal this summer, but Benitez may be lining up another raid on Anfield with a move for Skrtel.

Liverpool signed three centre-backs over the transfer window, suggesting Skrtel does not figure in manager Brendan Rodgers' plans.

Mamadou Sakho, Tiago Ilori and Kolo Toure all arrived on Merseyside, where a partnership of Sakho and Daniel Agger is believed to be the most likely first-choice defensive pairing for the rest of the season.

The Slovakia international defender is expected to be open to a departure from Liverpool, where he has become something of a peripheral figure.

Napoli meanwhile, is understood to be on the lookout for loan recruits with which to improve their backline. Reports in Italy suggest Skrtel remains the number one priority, but Barcelona right-back Martin Montoya is also being targeted.

The Serie A side has made a positive start to this year's league campaign under Benitez, wining two matches from two games.

Portuguese Starlet Departs On Loan

Portuguese youth international Joao Carlos Teixeira has left Liverpool for a month's loan at Brentford.

The Bees, who lost the League One Play Off final to Yeovil Town last season, currently lie 9th in the standings with a total of nine points from six games.

Teixeira, 20, joined Liverpool from Sporting Lisbon in February 2012, in a deal worth a reported £1million, following a string of impressive performances in the NextGen Series.

Although he is yet to feature for Liverpool's first team, the playmaker has become an integral part of the club's U21 side and is highly regarded on Merseyside.

Commenting on the capture, Brentford boss Uwe Rosler told the club's official website: "I feel we needed another addition to give us extra quality in the final third.

"We thank Liverpool for allowing Joao to come here. He will give us something creative we need, especially when teams sit deep against us.

"This is Joao's first loan spell and we have to be careful with him and look after him."

Ilori Won't Rule Out England Role

New Liverpool defender Tiago Ilori would consider an offer to play for England - although he says playing for Portugal remains his ambition.

Ilori has represented Portugal at various youth levels but he was born in London and could still switch allegiance having not been capped at senior level.

The 20-year-old joined Liverpool from Sporting Lisbon in a £7million deal on transfer deadline day last week.

Ilori told the Liverpool Echo: "I think I would like to stay loyal to Portugal as I've played in every age group for them.

"But I would never close any doors and there is no decision to make yet. If I have the choice then it is not a bad choice to have.

"I lived in a few places around Kentish Town. I was eight when we moved to Portugal. My mum is Portuguese. I didn't play in any football league when I was in London but just played with my friends.

"My English family is originally from Manchester and they all moved to London. My dad was born in London as well."

Johnson Out Of Action For Ten Weeks

Liverpool defender Glen Johnson has suffered a further setback in his race to be fit after reports revealed he will face up to ten weeks out through injury.

Johnson was substituted towards the end of the match against Manchester United after picking up an ankle knock and was taken for scans.

But the results were worse than first feared – and will be out of action with the end of November a realistic date for a return to action.

The 29-year-old was due to start for England in their World Cup qualifiers to Moldova and this week’s match to Ukraine but had to drop out meaning a recall for Tottenham right back Kyle Walker.

It is a major blow for Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers after Johnson’s impressive start to the season.

He has been integral to Liverpool’s three wins from their first three matches keeping a hat-trick of clean sheets in the process.

Molby Questions £15m Liverpool Signing

Liverpool legend Jan Molby believes something obviously went wrong in the development of Liverpool's new £15m signing Mamadou Sakho.

Writing in the Liverpool Echo, Molby notes that Sakho was made Paris St Germain captain aged just 17, but his career since then has stalled and possibly even regressed.

The France international first lost the captaincy and then his place in the team following the Qatari takeover of the Parisian club, with Thiago Silva and Alex preferred.

Liverpool snapped him up for £15m on transfer deadline day, but Molby believes he's not the big-money signing Anfield fans had hoped for.

"Something obviously went wrong when you look at where he was at the age of 17 [when he was made Paris St Germain captain]," said Molby.

"But he is still only 23 and if he can recapture that early form he will flourish. He is big, strong, quick - all the attributes needed to succeed in the Premier League."

And he questioned the wisdom of spending so much money on an area of the squad Liverpool look relatively strong in.

The Reds have kept clean sheets in their first three Premier League matches - against Stoke, Manchester United and Aston Villa - but still spent close to £20m on Tiago Ilori and Sakho.

"When you kick off the season with three successive clean sheets, it's a little bit surprising to see two centre-backs added to the squad on transfer deadline day.

"Sakho might have cost £15m but he isn't the marquee signing we've chased all summer.

"With all due respect, there weren't any queues outside the club shop on Tuesday morning to buy shirts with his name on the back.

"A marquee signing is someone who gets you out of your seat like Mesut Ozil, Willian or Henrikh Mkhitaryan."

That is a reference to the transfer business of Arsenal and Chelsea - the Gunners snapped up Mesut Ozil for a club record £42.5m fee on deadline day while Jose Mourinho signed Willian from Anzhi.

Borussia Dortmund signed Mkhitaryan - a one-time Liverpool target - from Shakhtar Donetsk in July.

Rush Wants Suarez On The Bench First

Liverpool legend Ian Rush would like to see Luis Suarez start on the bench once he serves his suspension - because it would mean the Reds were playing well.

Rush hopes Liverpool continue their excellent start to the season that has seen them record three 1-0 wins from three Premier League matches, leaving them top of the table.

Suarez has two matches remaining of his ten-game ban received for his bite on Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic last term.

And Rush revealed he'd love to see Daniel Sturridge continue in the sole striker spot under Brendan Rodgers once Suarez returns to the first-team.

"For me, in an ideal world after six games of the season when Suarez is back, I'd love to see him left out because that would mean the team is winning and he has to fight for his place," Rush told talkSPORT.

"There's no doubt Suarez will get back in, but what a sight that would be for the opposition if Liverpool are not playing well and they see Suarez coming on.

"We're looking forward to that."

Sturridge has scored all three of Liverpool's Premier League goals so far this season, but the Reds striker has been struck down recently with a thigh injury.

He missed England's recent World Cup qualifying match against Moldova and will miss the game against Ukraine.

The earliest Suarez can return to the Liverpool squad is for the trip to Sunderland on September 29. Before that, the Reds face Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium and Southampton at Anfield.