Arsenal have been told to get serious with their offer for Luis Suarez by Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers. The Gunners bid £40 million and £1 earlier this week to trigger a clause in the forward’s contract that reportedly means they can now hold talks with him. However, Liverpool insist that the clause does not require anything more than that and they have no intention of selling the 26-year-old.
Rodgers has previously claimed that Suarez is worth as much as his fellow Uruguayan Edinson Cavani, who was signed by Paris Saint-Germain for £55 million earlier this month, and has said that Arsenal must increase their offer if they are to have a chance of securing a deal.
“If Arsenal want the player then they have to produce the value for the player,” he explained, according to the Liverpool Echo. “There was an offer a few weeks ago of £35 million and two weeks later it is now £40 million and £1. I don’t think it is anywhere near the value of what he is worth. It is two-fold really. A player may want to go, but then somebody has to pay the value or worth of that player.”
Arsenal could also be set to step up their interest in Bernard after the Brazilian attacking midfielder helped Atletico Mineiro to overturn a 2-0 first-leg deficit to defeat Olimpia and win the Copa Libertadores on Wednesday. French publication L’Equipe claimed earlier this week that a deal had already been agreed to take the 20-year-old to the Emirates.
Arsene Wenger denied that suggestion, but, according to the Daily Mail, Arsenal are close to securing a transfer after making a final check on him on Wednesday. The player has said that he is in no rush to leave, but understands that he has likely played his last match for Atletico Mineiro.
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"I don't know what can happen with me, but if I leave, I know I will have done my job," he said, according to Sky Sports. "I have said a thousand times that I want to stay, but it doesn't depend on me now. I made it clear that, if I stay or not, I wanted to leave here with an important title. It's up to God to decide if I stay or not, up to God, [Atletico Mineiro's] presidency and the board."
"I'll keep working until the board decides something about the transfer. There are offers from English football, Shakhtar and Porto.”
With Thomas Vermaelen still out injured, Wenger could well be encouraged to enter the transfer market to bring in defensive reinforcements. Ashley Williams is a name that has long been linked with the Gunners and the Daily Mirror reports that Wenger is considering reigniting his pursuit of the Swansea City captain. A deal is thought to have been prevented in the past by Swansea’s £10 million asking price, but it is now said that the Premier League side may consider lowing that figure to £8.5 million.
Arsenal have also previously been mentioned in connection with a move for Valencia’s central defender Adil Rami. And Spanish sports daily Marca has reported that the France international could now be available for a reduced price of between €9 million (£7.8m) and €10 million (£8.6m).