Monday, July 21, 2014

Rodgers Has Big Plans For Jordon Ibe

Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers is eager to see the development of starlet Jordon Ibe, who set up the Reds only goal in last Wednesday night's friendly.

Kristoffer Peterson, 19, scored the equalizer against Brondby early into the second half, but credit has to go to Ibe for his trickery down the left wing to assist the goal.

The 18-year-old winger assisted seven in all competitions last season, getting on the scoresheet three times, and Rodgers admits there's a lot more to come from the youngster.

"It's going to be interesting for me to look at his development over pre-season," Rodgers said.

"You saw on Wednesday night that he's a really exciting young player. He's still only 18 years of age.

"He had a wonderful piece of skill and run for the goal, a good assist. That's something that we're looking to improve in Jordon - to score more goals and assists.

"He's disappointed with his first touch when he was through on goal. He's an exciting talent who is very good in the one-v-one and works very hard at his game.

"We give him time; I don't necessarily need young players to be ready at 17 or 18, but certainly by 20 or 21, we want them to be ready.

"He's a different type of player [to Raheem Sterling], but certainly both players like to beat people and commit defenders. They are very aggressive with the ball. It's just looking at the next stage of his development so hopefully he can consistently do that."

PSV Eindhoven Reach Agreement To Sell Zakaria Bakkali

PSV Eindhoven are aiming to sell starlet Zakaria Bakkali this summer and have accepted a bid from an unnamed club for the 18-year-old.

The highly-rated forward sees his contract at the Philips Stadion expire next summer, meaning he could well exit for a club of his choice in 2015.

PSV are keen to realize some value from the Belgian and have decided a sale in the current transfer window would be the best state of affairs.

And according to the Eindhovens Dagblad, PSV have accepted an offer for Bakkali from an unnamed club.

The name of the club has not been disclosed, but Liverpool are known to be seriously interested in Bakkali.

The ball is now in Bakkali's court to either accept or decline a move to the unnamed club, as PSV look to finally resolve the question of whether he is staying or going.

Bakkali made 16 appearances in the Eredivisie for PSV last term, scoring three goals, while he also featured in four Europa League games.

The 18-year-old has long been tipped for the top and even has a senior Belgium cap to his name.

Loic Remy Heading To America To Seal Liverpool Move

Loic Remy will complete his £8.5million Liverpool move in America this week.

The QPR striker is expected to join up with Liverpool on their pre-season tour.

Remy, 27, will fly into Boston later this week if everything goes to plan to officially become Brendan Rodgers' fifth summer signing.

The France forward is close to agreeing personal terms and neither parties can forsee any issues.

Remy will offer Rodgers another attacking option following Luis Suarez's £75m move to Barcelona.

It takes Rodgers' spending to over £60m already this summer.

Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana, Emre Can and Lazar Markovic have already arrived to bolster their squad. But the Kop boss is not ready to stop there with at least three more names are expected to arrive.

Southampton defender Dejan Lovren is still on their radar and Liverpool are increasingly confident of agreeing a deal with the Saints.

Swansea left back Ben Davies is being chased as the Reds tussle it out with Tottenham for his signature.

Rodgers is also hoping to land a marquee signing to fill the void left by star striker Suarez.

Lovren Move To Liverpool Imminent After Southampton Accept £16m Bid

Dejan Lovren is set to join Liverpool from Southampton in the next 24 hours.

Reports earlier today suggested that the Saints were preparing to let Lovren leave as they lined up a bid for Aston Villa defender Ron Vlaar.

But reports in Croatia suggest that a deal is now imminent and could be confirmed as soon as this evening.

It is thought that 25-year-old will now sign a four-deal at Anfield after the Reds agreed to fork over £16m for the former Lyon star.

Lovren has been agitating for a move after seeing some of the Saints top talent follow Mauricio Pochettino out the Saint Mary's exit door.

Earlier today Ronald Koeman told Fox Sport: "Ron [Vlaar] would definitely be an option.

"But I think he won't be cheap right now. Let's just wait and see.

"We just have to wait how it develops.

"For now, Dejan can still play with us. I don't want to lose him but, if he leaves he will only go for a top price."

But it seems that Liverpool have now met Southampton's demands and Lovren now looks set to join former Saints teammates Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana on Merseyside.

Man City Defender Wants To Join Liverpool On Loan

Former England defender Micah Richards is hoping that Manchester City will allow him to join Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur or Newcastle United on loan this season, according to The Express.

Richards made just two Premier League appearances last term – both of which came before Christmas.

With Bacary Sagna and Pablo Zabaleta ahead of him in the pecking order, Richards appears to be surplus to requirements at the Etihad Stadium.

Multiple clubs have expressed an interest in signing him, but all have been put off by City demanding a £7m transfer fee for the 26-year-old, who has just 12 months left to run on his current contract.

Richards is desperate to get back to playing regularly and he is apparently ready to ask City to let him leave on loan, with Liverpool, Spurs and Newcastle all keen takers.

However, City may be reluctant to sanction a loan deal, as it would effectively equate to releasing him on a free transfer.

Richards has spent his entire senior career with City, having made his first-team debut back in 2005.

He made his full international debut in 2006 and he has been capped 13 times to date.

Richards also represented Great Britain at the 2012 Olympic Games.

Liverpool Target Fiorentina Goalkeeper Neto

Liverpool has switched their attentions away from Michel Vorm – and are poised to take Fiorentina keeper Neto to Anfield, according to reports.

Brendan Rodgers is looking for another goalkeeping option for next season as he prepares his squad for Champions League. Brad Jones is not good enough to regularly challenge Simon Mignolet for the first-team squad, though he has looked good in cup competitions last season.

Pepe Reina spent last season on loan at Napoli, working alongside Ex-Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez. His loan deal was expected to turn into a permanent one as both Reina and Benitez had hinted at the prospect during the course of last season.

However, Napoli and Liverpool are now unable to reach a conclusion because of differences in fee demand, and possibly Reina’s heavy weekly wages. Right now, the goalkeeper is on his way with the club to the USA for their pre-season tour. Reina said that he is ‘raring to go’ and he loves the city.

‘I still have two years on my contract with Liverpool, I was there for eight years, I love the city and the people there have treated me very well,’ said Reina.

‘Last year I ended up at Napoli, it went very well for me there and I grew as a player but now I’m going back to Liverpool and raring to go.’

Despite his encouraging comments, the Spaniard’s future is uncertain with the club as it could be difficult to persuade him to be a second choice to Mignolet.

Liverpool was looking at Swansea’s Michael Vorm as the goalkeeper they wanted to bring in to the club. But the Dutchman is now close to a move to Tottenham. It looks like Brendan Rodgers has shifted his attention to Norberto Neto, who plays for Fiorentina in Serie A.

The 25-year-old made 35 league appearances and help Fiorentina finish fourth in the 2013-14 campaign. He did not have a good start to the season and was criticized for his performances. However, he really stepped up his game after that and received plaudits for his composed shot-stopping.

Former Fiorentina goalkeeper Sébastien Frey said about the player, “I trained for a few months with Neto and he has a natural explosiveness, while I think the Italian school helped him grow even more. He can become one of the best goalkeepers in Serie A.”

Although the player is keen on a stay in Florence, it doesn’t look like the club has the player in their long-term plans. The club signed Romanian goalkeeper Ciprian Tatarusanu from Steaua Bucharest, which further puts his spot in jeopardy.

They are yet to offer him a new contract, despite the player telling the club he is willing to. Neto has just one year left on his contract and might be an easy target for the Reds.

The Brazilian would come as a second-choice goalkeeper to Liverpool, if Reina departs the club. His arrival would mean that the Reds have a quality goalkeeper for their European competitions. Moreover, Simon Mignolet needs competition so that he doesn’t become complacent, something he was guilty of last season. Neto would not command a huge fee and could prove to be a good addition to Liverpool.

Everton And Liverpool Close In On MK Dons Youngsters

Everton are closing in on MK Dons starlet Brendan Galloway while Liverpool want to sign Dele Alli from the Dons.

Eighteen-year-old Galloway has asked to leave the League One club amid interest from a host of Premier League sides.

The Dons, who handed Galloway his debut at 15, will seek a substantial compensation fee for losing the England Under-19 midfielder.

Galloway made 13 appearances for MK Dons last season, scoring in their FA Cup clash against Halifax in November.

The youngster was sent off in his last appearance of the campaign.

Dele Alli, another wonderkid to emerge from the club’s academy, could also go – with Liverpool long-term admirers.

The 18-year-old was a mainstay in the Dons XI last season, making 37 appearances and scoring seven goals.

Sunderland Still Confident Of Signing Fabio Borini

Sunderland manager Gus Poyet is still confident he will land Fabio Borini in a £14m deal, despite the striker flying out on a pre-season tour with Liverpool.

The two clubs have agreed the fee for the Italian forward, but last night he was with the Reds in America.

Poyet is planning to speak to Borini and his representatives today to thrash out personal terms and get the transfer finalized.

Although some Black Cats fans are worried the deal is floundering, the Sunderland boss remains relaxed and optimistic he will land the 23-year-old.

Borini scored 10 goals on loan at Sunderland last season and Poyet is desperate to get him back to the Stadium of Light for the upcoming campaign.

And Poyet said: "What I can inform you is that we have agreed terms with Liverpool for Fabio.

"It's an ongoing thing. We've done the steps that we needed to do properly, but the next step is that we are still waiting for the correspondence.

"Then we will go on from there, doing everything official, in the right way.

"I think Fabio's impact is clear, as is the reason why we want to spend that quantity of money. We know how much he can give us because we know him perfectly. It would be perfect for us.

"I'm really calm regarding Fabio because as everyone knows, it's not about numbers or quantity, it's more about the quality of your signings.

"I'm delighted with what we've done so far.''

The Sunderland manager is expected to speak with Borini's agents soon and if terms are agreed, the Black Cats will fly the striker back from America in order for him to join them on a training camp in Portugal this weekend.

Napoli Close In On Lucas Leiva Loan

Napoli are close to completing a loan deal for Liverpool midfielder Lucas Leiva, Goal understands.

The Serie A side has reached an agreement with Liverpool over a season-long move for the Brazilian, who could reunite with former Anfield boss Rafa Benitez at Anfield.

The deal would also involve a permanent transfer clause, which would be triggered once Lucas has played a certain number of games for Napoli.

But the Italian club is keen to lower the potential transfer fee, with Liverpool understood to want £10 million for the 27-year-old.

Lucas moved to Anfield from Gremio in 2007 and became a regular fixture in the Liverpool side under Benitez, though injuries have stalled his career.

But the signing of Emre Can from Bayer Leverkusen this summer, and the return to fitness of Joe Allen, who was also signed by current Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers, could see Lucas's first team opportunities limited next season.

Liverpool has also completed the signings of Southampton pair Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana, as well as former Benfica winger Lazar Markovic.

Goal understands the Merseyside outfit is also close to completing the signing of Loic Remy from QPR as Rodgers prepares his squad for Champions League football and the loss of Luis Suarez to Barcelona.

Suso Sees Future At Liverpool

Suso is determined to impress manager Brendan Rodgers during preseason and earn a place in the Liverpool team.

The 20-year-old signed for Liverpool from Cadiz in 2010 but has struggled to make an impact at the club and last season he was loaned out to Almeria, where he scored three Liga goals.

After netting an excellent strike for Liverpool in their 2-1 friendly win over Preston on Saturday, Suso has said he sees his future at Anfield.

The Spaniard told Liverpool's official website: "I really want to be here and play for Liverpool and I'm trying to do my best every day in training and show the manager what I'm capable of.

"I learned a lot during my loan spell and I was playing regular football. I'm not really a young player anymore so I've got more responsibilities now and I will work as hard as I can to try and get a chance."

On his strike, Suso added: "It was a very nice moment for me. I've been waiting a very long time to score a goal and I'm happy. The team put in a good performance and we have to be happy.

"I've been waiting so long now to score a goal for Liverpool. Last season while I was on loan in Spain I was watching Liverpool play on the TV and wanting to score a goal for them and now I've got one."

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Liverpool Plan To Spend On Yaya Toure And Gervinho

Liverpool has identified Yaya Toure and Gervinho as top transfer targets as they look to replace the attacking contribution of Luis Suarez, CaughtOffside understands.

Suarez will complete his move to Barcelona in the next 24 hours, leaving Liverpool with a huge hole to fill and the best part of £75m in spending money.

Reds manager Brendan Rodgers is keen to use £16m of his newfound transfer kitty to bring Gervinho to Anfield.

The 27-year-old joined Roma from Arsenal just 12 months ago, but he has a buyout clause in his current contract and the Reds are ready to activate it.

Gervinho was one of the best attacking players in Serie A last season, scoring nine goals and providing 10 assists in 33 league games.

The versatile star continued his fine form at the World Cup, where he was directly involved in three of the Ivory Coast’s four goals, scoring two and setting up one.

International teammate Toure was also in exceptional form last season, bagging 20 Premier League goals from midfield for Manchester City.

Toure has three years left to run on his current contract, but he is far from happy at the Etihad Stadium.

He was unimpressed with City’s efforts to celebrate his 31st birthday in May and he has since accused the club of failing to grant him time to spend with ill brother Ibrahim, who died month.

Toure is determined to leave City this summer and, fearing that he could become a disruptive influence, the English champions could reluctantly sell, with Paris Saint-Germain, Chelsea and Liverpool all interested.

City would rather do business with PSG because they do not want to boost one of their main domestic rivals.

However, Toure is settled in the north of England and he would prefer a convenient switch to Anfield.

Liverpool is hopeful that a £30m transfer fee will be enough to secure Toure’s services.

The Reds are willing to make Toure the world’s most expensive player in his 30s, as they feel he has the ability to lead them to their first league title since 1990.

Liverpool has also held talks with Chelsea regarding a potential move for 21-year-old forward Romelu Lukaku.

Liverpool Table Shock Bid To Land Marco Reus

Liverpool is reportedly targeting Borussia Dortmund forward Marco Reus in an audacious £45m raid according to reports in the Guardian.

Anfield boss Brendan Rodgers has bagged a reported £75m from the sale of Luis Suarez to Barcelona and has already started to invest well in the summer transfer market having brought in Southampton pair Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana as well as German midfielder Emre Can, but it seems the Northern Irishman has further targets in mind.

Reus is said to be upset that his planned move to Barcelona was shelved due to the Nou Camp side opting instead to bring in disgraced Uruguayan Suarez, and this could leave the impressive attacker’s future at the Westfalenstadion hanging in the balance.

The former Borussia Monchengladbach man moved to Dortmund in July 2012 with Jurgen Klopp’s side at that time the reigning Bundesliga title holders, however the club’s fortunes have faded a great deal since then.

Bayern Munich has marched to back to back domestic titles, opening massive gaps between themselves and their rivals, and to top it all off the Allianz Arena side first snapped up Mario Gotze from Borussia Dortmund and then this summer welcomed in Klopp’s top-scorer Robert Lewandowski on a free transfer.

Reus may feel the time is right for a new challenge and having sworn to never sign for Bayern Munich which could narrow down his potential options.

A move to a resurgent Liverpool could interest Reus and the Merseyside outfit are ready to offer a club record £45m to see the deal done.

Reus can operate in a wide attacking role or in a supporting striker role, and perhaps working well with Daniel Sturridge, and has netted an impressive 42 goals in 90 appearances for Borussia Dortmund.

The cultured forward was named in Joachim Low’s 2014 World Cup squad but suffered an ankle injury in a warm-up friendly just ahead of the tournament that ruled him out of contention.

Liverpool Ready To Trigger £32m Release Clause Of Arda Turan

Liverpool could be set to reinvest £32m from the sale of Luis Suarez to sign Turkish midfielder Arda Turan from Atletico Madrid.

Manchester United and Arsenal both hold a longstanding interest in Turan, but Atletico have always insisted that the player would not be allowed to leave unless his buy-out clause was met.

That has previously prevented any of the Premier League trio making a move for Turan, but reports in Turkey suggest that Liverpool may be ready to trigger the £32m clause.

The Reds are set to pocket £75m from the sale of Suarez, and while Brendan Rodgers has moved quickly to bring in reinforcements, Turan's signing would be one of proven quality.

The 27-year-old was a crucial player in Atletico's rise to prominence last season, but Diego Simeone is aware that he will have to overhaul his squad this summer.

Diego Costa has already agreed to join Chelsea with Filipe Luis also headed for Stamford Bridge, while David Villa has moved to the MLS.

Simeone would be reluctant to lose Turan as well, but Atletico have been linked with a move for Arsenal's Santi Cazorla.

Cazorla could be prised away from the Emirates for approximately £18m, meaning that Atletico could net a £14m profit from the Turan sale to spend on other players.

Liverpool Line Up Jay Rodriguez Move

Liverpool are eyeing a move for injured Southampton star Jay Rodriguez but Brendan Rodgers also remains keen on Swansea's Wilfried Bony and QPR striker Loic Remy.

The Reds have already moved to land Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana from St Mary's this summer, and also harbour an interest in Croatian defender Dejan Lovren.

Lovren has been forced to join the Saints on their pre-season tour of Belgium after new boss Ronald Koeman insisted he didn't want any more departures.

But reports suggest Liverpool could be set to test Koeman's resolve with a bid for Rodriguez, as well as refusing to give up on Lovren.

Rodriguez is out until October after suffering a ruptured cruciate ligament near the end of last season that scuppered his World Cup dreams.

But the former Burnley man was in prolific form up until that point and clearly captured Rodgers' attention.

The Anfield club have money to spend after agreeing to sell Luis Suarez to Barcelona for £75m.

That has seen the Reds jump to the front of the queue in their bid to land Bony, while they look set to fight it out with Arsenal for the services on Remy.

It now remains to be seen whether Rodriguez remains on Rodgers' wish-list if he is able to land either of Bony or Remy.

Liverpool Dealt Blow In Shaqiri Pursuit

Bayern Munich has ruled out the sale of Swiss attacker Xherdan Shaqiri, who had been the subject of interest from Liverpool this summer.

As reported by Goal, the Merseysiders were willing to pay £15 million for the 22-year-old and held tentative talks with the German champions in June.

But Die Roten are keen to keep Shaqiri at the Allianz Arena – especially with Toni Kroos' future in doubt – and sporting director Matthias Sammer says that the former Basel star will not be allowed to leave the club.

"Xherdan is an important player for the future," the Bayern chief told Kicker. "There are no thoughts at all about selling him."

Shaqiri shone at the World Cup for a Swiss side who were knocked out in the last 16, scoring a superb hat-trick in their 3-0 win over Honduras.

The playmaker had been wanted as part of a new-look Anfield attack in the wake of Luis Suarez's move to Barcelona and had even intimated that he would be open to moving to the Premier League.

But with Bayern keen to retain a player who scored six goals in 17 Bundesliga appearances last season, Liverpool will be forced to look elsewhere.

The Reds are close to capturing Benfica winger Lazar Markovic in a £19.8m deal and the Serbian could be quickly followed by Belgian striker Divock Origi and Southampton defender Dejan Lovren.

Lazar Markovic Arrives In Liverpool For Medical

Lazar Markovic will take Liverpool’s spending towards £60million on Tuesday when he is confirmed as Brendan Rodgers’ fourth summer signing.

The Serbia international arrived on Merseyside on Sunday night ahead of completing a two-part medical at Spire Liverpool Hospital and the club’s Melwood training ground after Liverpool triggered the £20million release clause in his Benfica contract.

Markovic arrived at Anfield later, posing with a club shirt.

Liverpool have been pursuing Markovic all summer – he was a target long before it became inevitable that Luis Suarez would join Barcelona – and they acted quickly to land one of the most highly-regarded young players in Europe.

Markovic, who played a crucial role in helping Benfica win the Portuguese title last season, has agreed a long-term contract at Anfield and he joins Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana and Emre Can as new additions to a squad that finished runners-up to Manchester City in May.

The 20-year-old, a highly-rated left-sided attacker, will not be Liverpool’s final signing of the window by any means, with Belgium striker Divock Origi also close to joining Liverpool, while they are exploring reviving a deal for in Sevilla left-back Alberto Moreno.

Liverpool are considering moves for, among others, Swansea pair Wilfried Bony and Ben Davies, QPR striker Loic Remy and they have not lost interest in Croatia defender Dejan Lovren, even though Southampton are standing firm. Borussia Dortmund’s Marco Reus, however, is not a target.

It is set to be a summer of change at Anfield, as a number of players, including Lucas Leiva and Daniel Agger, could leave; while Iago Aspas is set to complete a loan move to Sevilla with a view to a permanent £4.5m deal following talks between the two clubs.

Liverpool returned to training last week and play their first pre-season friendly tomorrow in Copenhagen against Brondby; they then face Preston at Deepdale on Saturday before heading to the United States for a tour, where they will be joined by their six England internationals.

Sevilla Agree To Sign Aspas On Loan

Sevilla have confirmed a deal has been agreed with Liverpool to sign Iago Aspas on a season-long loan.

The Spanish club also have an option to buy the forward, while the move is subject to a medical and the relevant paperwork being completed.

The 26-year-old joined Brendan Rodgers' side from Celta Vigo last June but made just 15 appearances in all competitions last term.

Aspas' only goal during his debut campaign at Anfield came in the 2-0 win over Oldham Athletic in the FA Cup third round.

Prior to Aspas' exit, Rodgers bolstered his attacking options last month with the signing of Rickie Lambert from Southampton, although Luis Suarez is on the verge of completing his €94 million move to Barcelona.

Liverpool is also expected to complete a €25m deal for Benfica forward Lazar Markovic. The 20-year-old has already arrived on Merseyside to undergo a medical and finalise personal terms.

Southampton Want Liverpool Full-Back

Southampton is reportedly keen on Liverpool full-back Martin Kelly according to the Daily Mail.

St Mary’s boss Ronald Koeman has to cope with the loss of a number of the squad that helped Southampton to secure an excellent top half finish in the Premier League but will hope to have funds to help strengthen this summer.

Luke Shaw left for Man United and England duo Rickie Lambert & Adam Lallana are Liverpool bound for 2014/15 and a number of others may follow suit though Koeman has managed to bring in prolific Italian Graziano Pelle and has a number of other targets on his summer wish-list including Arsenal youngster Serge Gnabry and Cardiff City keeper David Marshall.

24 year old England man Kelly burst onto the scene some years ago but injuries have taken their toll and the emergence of John Flanagan has perhaps left the locally born full-back considering his options.

Brendan Rodgers may be open to allowing the defender to leave, especially if he has designs on bringing a fresh left-back, with Sevilla’s Alberto Moreno said to be close to joining the club.

Kelly is primarily used at right-back but can be used on the left-hand side of the defence and may be seen as a possible replacement for Luke Shaw.

Hughes Hopeful Of Signing Assaidi

Stoke City manager Mark Hughes is still hopeful of securing the services of Liverpool winger Oussama Assaidi on a permanent basis.

The Moroccan spent last season on loan at the Britannia Stadium and enjoyed a relatively impressive campaign, the highlight of which came when he scored a spectacular goal to give his side a 3-2 win over Chelsea in December.

Hughes is keen to add another winger to his ranks but reports suggest that a move for Assaidi has stalled due to issues over fitness and the club's finances.

"We are where we are on that one," the Potters boss told The Sentinel. "Ideally, if we can do something then, yes, we will.

"He's someone we know and someone we know can have an impact so, yes, we would like to see if something can be done with Ossie but obviously he isn't our player and that means the ball is in Liverpool's court."

Hughes is pleased with Stoke's business so far this summer, which has seen them bring in Mame Biram Diouf, Phil Bardsley, Steve Sidwell and Dionatan Teixeira, though the former Manchester City and Fulham boss is eager to make further additions before the start of the new season.

"People are coming back from the World Cup so things can move on quite quickly," he added.

"We are still keen to add to the squad if the right quality at the right price is available but we are in a good place because of the early work already done."

Suso Eager For Liverpool Stay

Suso is determined to fight for his place at Liverpool following a season on loan at Almeria.

The 20-year-old Spaniard spent last term in his homeland, making 33 appearances as the La Liga side avoided relegation.

Suso has now returned to Merseyside, and believes he is ready to make his mark at Anfield following a full campaign of first-team football.

"After the season in Spain, I think I have become a better player - I learned a lot," the playmaker told Liverpool's official website.

"Obviously Liverpool are going to sign a lot of players because we are in the Champions League this season, and we have to have a good squad because there are a lot of competitions.

"But if I fight for my place, I do my best every day in training and when I have the chance to come on or start a game, if I do well, I could have chances to play a lot of minutes in the first team."

Suso made his breakthrough at Liverpool as a teenager in 2012-13, as he made 14 top-flight appearances in Brendan Rodgers' first season in charge.

And the Spain Under-21 international says that he has held positive talks with Rodgers about his prospects with the Premier League runners-up.

"I came here in December at Christmas when I had my week of holidays....I came here for two or three days to have a meeting with the manager," Suso added.

"He talked to me, said he was happy with what I was doing and said that this season he wants me to stay here.

Liverpool Starlet Ibe Out To Emulate Sterling

Liverpool winger Jordon Ibe wants to emulate the success of Raheem Sterling and break into the first team.

Sterling starred for Liverpool in the second half of last season, scoring nine goals in 33 Premier League appearances as the Reds finished runners-up behind Manchester City and earning a place in England's World Cup squad.

The Three Lions star started 2013-14 at the age of 18, as old as Ibe is now, and the latter is keen to capitalise of Brendan Rodgers's willingness to trust in youth.

"He's only a year older than me so I need to follow in his footsteps and watch all of the other attacking players," Ibe told the club's official website of Sterling.

"He's done well and scored a lot of goals. He's working hard all the time in training and impressing the manager. Because he's young, players are helping him so hopefully they can do the same for me."

Ibe has set his sights on more first-team action at Liverpool this season but knows that the club may make several further additions to their squad after the big-money sale of Luis Suarez to Barcelona, with Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana and Emre Can already having moved to Anfield.

"For me personally, I'm trying to get into the first team and hopefully get minutes," the youngster continued.

"I'll try to do well in pre-season first and see how it goes. I'm still quite young, I'm only 18 so I need to stay grounded, watch the senior players in my position, keep working hard and hopefully I can do well this season.

"I thought I did well in the last game [a post-season friendly against Shamrock Rovers] and other youngsters did well. It's just about working hard in pre-season and most of all impressing in pre-season and on tour."

Monday, July 07, 2014

Lovren: I Want To Join Reds

Southampton defender Dejan Lovren has hit out as his current club and made it clear his thoughts are focused on joining Liverpool.

The Saints have rejected a bid from the Reds for Lovren, an offer he says was for £20million and claims the south coast outfit did not inform him about.

Having expressed his disappointment at that situation, the 25-year-old Croatia international has emphasized that his "head is already at Liverpool".

He has also made reference to what he regards as a lack of ambition from Southampton, who this summer have seen manager Mauricio Pochettino leave for Tottenham, full-back Luke Shaw join Manchester United and midfielder Adam Lallana and striker Rickie Lambert both sign for Liverpool.

Quoted in Croatian newspaper Sportske Novosti, Lovren said: "Liverpool sent the offer and the club hasn’t informed me.

"That wasn't right. I found out about the bid from other people which disappointed me and I realized I've got no business staying at Southampton.

"Liverpool sent a £20million offer and they (Southampton) paid £9million for me, so they would've earned more than twice the amount.

"At this point, I don't know what I'll do and I don't like it.

"It was unbelievable that a few days ago I had an offer of £20million. It was in the morning and by the afternoon the club had said I was not for sale. Frankly, my head is already at Liverpool."

On Southampton, he said: "Honestly, I don't know who the main man at the club is anymore. They are now looking for £25million, but I don't think they'll get it.

"Look, I'd gladly stay at Southampton if the club had any ambitions, if they kept the key players. Not even the Liverpool bid would have dissuaded me."

And on his suitors, Lovren said: "Liverpool is one of the biggest clubs in the world.

"Only Real Madrid has as many fans around the world. The last time I played at Anfield, I got chills when I heard 'You'll Never Walk Alone.'

"I would like to listen to it all the time."

Liverpool And Monaco Eyeing Swoop For Moussa Sissoko

Liverpool are eying a move for Newcastle midfielder Moussa Sissoko.

Reports suggest French heavyweights Monaco are also keen on the midfield ace.

Sissoko moved to St James' Park in January 2013 for around £1.8m.

He has starred in the centre of the park for the Magpies during his time in the north east, catching the eye of big-spending Monaco and Brendan Rodgers' Reds.

French newspaper L'Equipe suggests Monaco are ready to make a bid for Sissoko as they look to bolster their squad ahead of a return to the Champions League.

They also report that Liverpool hold a strong interest in the player, and may make a move as they themselves look to add strength and quality to their ranks as Rodgers prepares for a return to Europe.

Sissoko's agent suggested earlier this summer that a move away from the Toon was on the cards this summer.

"We're only a year-and-a-half into his Newcastle contract, but open to all propositions for Moussa," he said.

The 24-year-old has made 47 Premier League starts for the club, and has scored six goals.

Liverpool Step Up Miguel Layun Interest

Liverpool are in hot pursuit of Mexico left-back Miguel Layun, according to Mexican newspaper Fichajes.

The 26-year old - who currently plays his football at Club America - has been another player who has shone on the World Cup stage following a string of impressive performances for Mexico in Brazil.

Layun would suit manager Brendan Rodgers' style as he has shown himself to be a marauding defender who loves to get forward.

That would be in keeping with the Reds free-flowing football of last season, which earned them many plaudits on their way to a second-placed finish.

However, they may have to fight off interest from Inter Milan, although the player himself is understood to prefer a move to the Premier League.

Liverpool Keeping An Eye On DeAndre Yedlin

Liverpool could be ready to make a move for a World Cup star this summer having increased their interest in USA’s DeAndre Yedlin.

The 20-year-old has impressed as a substitute for Jurgen Klinsmann’s team and The Metro claim Liverpool are keen to offer him a trial.

Brendan Rodgers reportedly wants the Seattle Sounders man to train with his team during pre-season before deciding whether or not to pursue a summer transfer.

Due to the impressive form of Fabian Johnson in the American defence, Yedlin has had limited playing time in Brazil, but he’s done enough coming off the bench to convince Rodgers to take a closer look at him.

Despite naturally being a right back, Yedlin’s pace has been used in a more attacking role for the US and he hasn’t looked out of place on the world stage.

At just 20-years old, Yedlin has his best years ahead of him and could perhaps be seen as a long-term replacement for England defender Glen Johnson should he move on this summer.

The Merseyside club has already been linked with a move for Benfica’s Maxi Pereira, but USA man Yedlin would surely be a better investment given his age.

The American has plenty of similarities with Johnson - both enjoy getting forward from the right-back position, while Yedlin is comfortable filling in at left-back, just as Johnson has done on occasion for Liverpool.

Though Seattle Sounders and MLS are unlikely to want to lose one of their brightest stars, Liverpool have shown they are willing to pay the price to secure their targets and have already spent in the region of £40million this summer.

No Liverpool Contact Over Huntelaar, Insist Schalke

Schalke general manager Horst Heldt insists the club have received no contact from Liverpool over a possible move for Klaas-Jan Huntelaar.

The Netherlands international has recently been linked with a switch to Anfield as they line up potential replacements for Luis Suarez, with Liverpool currently holding talks with Barcelona over the sale of the striker.

Huntelaar has been coy on the speculation and Heldt insists Schalke have no plans to part company with a player who has scored 59 goals in 100 Bundesliga appearances for the club.

"Most recently, I've read that Liverpool should have interest in Klaas-Jan Huntelaar," he told the club's official website.

"Liverpool, Klaas-Jan and also his adviser have not contacted us.

"And we also have no interest in selling the player."

Huntelaar is confirmed he is talks with Schalke over an extension to his contract with the Bundesliga club, but is not keen to continue discussions during the World Cup with Netherlands reaching the semi-final on Saturday.

Liverpool To Make Last-Gasp Attempt To Sign Ashley Cole

Liverpool is set to make an 11th hour attempt to persuade former Chelsea star Ashley Cole to move to Anfield.

Roma are believed to be in the driving seat for the 33-year-old's signature and are closing in on a two-year deal for the left back as they are in advanced talks.

Though Roma are confident of ratifying a deal next week, reports suggest Liverpool will use their powers of persuasion to convince Cole to join them instead.

Cole was released by Chelsea at the end of last season and has had no shortage of offers with the likes of Monaco harboring an interest in him.

Cole has been holidaying recently after retiring from England duty with 107 caps but is yet to decide his next move.

Barcelona and AC Milan have also been keeping tabs on Cole, who believes he still has a lot to offer at the highest level.

Cole spent eight years at Stamford Bridge after joining them from Arsenal.

Napoli Seek Lucas And Reina

Napoli are hoping to take Lucas Leiva and Pepe Reina on loan from Liverpool this season.

Reina already spent last term at the Stadio San Paolo and attempts to buy the goalkeeper outright have proved fruitless.

According to Sky Sport Italia they are trying to secure another one-year loan for Reina with Liverpool paying half his wages.

During these negotiations, Rafa Benitez is also requesting another Liverpool player, midfielder Lucas Leiva.

He is also targeted on loan, as he has struggled for playing time amid injuries lately.

Their interest in Leiva was also confirmed by the Daily Mirror, as Emre Can’s arrival will limit his playing time at Anfield.

It was Rafa Benitez who signed Lucas from Gremio in 2007.

Daniel Agger To Be Offloaded This Summer

Liverpool are reportedly desperate to sell defender Daniel Agger this summer – with the club already having offered the player to Barcelona.

The 29-year-old – who made just 23 appearances for the Reds last season – admitted in May that he did not know where his future lay because he believed that manager Brendan Rodgers didn’t rate him enough.

And Spanish newspaper, Mundo Deportivo, have now claimed that Liverpool want to transfer Agger in the coming months – with the club even offering the defender to Spanish giants Barcelona.

The publication reports that the Catalan club, who need to find a replacement for Carles Puyol, received the proposal three months ago, and assessed the player’s technical level but ended up rejecting it.

The Merseyside club’s offer was apparently not linked to Luis Suarez’s prospective move to the Spanish club and will have no bearing on the Uruguay international’s future.

Liverpool are keen to bolster their defensive options before the start of the new Premier League campaign with Southampton recently rejecting a £20m bid for defender Dejan Lovren.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Suarez Set To Complete £80M Move For Barcelona In Next 48 Hours

Barcelona expect to finalize a deal for Liverpool striker Luis Suarez over the next 48 hours.

Talks are ongoing and the Spanish club is concentrating on a straight cash deal for the 27-year-old who Liverpool value at £80million.

Suarez would be allowed to have a medical ahead of a transfer under the terms of his four-month ban for biting, FIFA's disciplinary chief has confirmed.

The Liverpool striker has been banned from all football-related activities including from stadiums, but it will not prevent him moving clubs if a transfer deal is agreed.

Claudio Sulser, the head of FIFA's disciplinary committee, said: 'The player cannot have any activity related to football, but a medical examination for a transfer yes - the sanction is not linked to transfer rights.'

Suarez has appealed against the four-month ban imposed for biting Italy's Giorgio Chiellini.

Wednesday's meeting between the two clubs in London was productive and cordial with sensible expectations placed on both sides.

Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre met with Barcelona power brokers Raúl Sanllehí, Toni Rossich and Jordi Mestre.

On Tuesday, Barcelona sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta publicly backed the shamed striker, smoothing the way for him to join Barcelona.

'Suarez had the honour to come out and apologize for his actions and now it's time for him to begin the recovery process,' Zubizarreta said at the Nou Camp as new signing Ivan Rakitic was unveiled.

Rakitic also had his say on the controversy, saying: 'To have the character and strength to apologize in front of the world shows what a noble person he is.'