Clinging to the Premier League lead in Sunday’s 2-1 victory over West Ham, manager Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool are also contemplating several moves ahead of this summer’s transfer window. Recent reports indicate the Reds are hoping to strengthen their back line as well as midfield, all while keeping Luis Suarez in Merseyside.
On Sunday, The People reported Liverpool had gained some traction with Real Madrid defender Fabio Coentrao, who has found pitch time sparse behind Marcelo. The 26-year-old’s agent may have met with Liverpool officials as early as last week, and the club is clearly trying to lock up the Portuguese before the-also-interested Manchester City and Ligue 1’s Monaco muck up the process.
In three years since his permanent switch to the Bernabeu from Benefica, Coentrao has only appeared in 43 matches and scored one goal, which nearly eclipses his 44 caps and three scores for Portugal’s first team.
Despite the lack of playing time, Madrid fully understands how sought after Coentrao is, and thusly won’t ask for less £11.5 million.
Another instance of an agent facilitating a player’s move first, comes from Dnipro winger Yevhen Konoplyanka. According to Daily Mail, representative James Lippett stoked the transfer fire via Twitter by simply saying “En route to Liverpool...”
The Reds originally tried to sign Konoplyanka, 24, in January but a deal couldn’t be reached before the deadline. Konoplyanka has starred for Dnipro since 2007, making 128 total appearances and scoring 26 goals and the Ukrainian club are reportedly asking for upwards of £16 million for their best player.
That price tag could make up more than a sixth of Rodgers’s reported £60 million transfer budget this summer, but the Reds seem intent on maximizing every last bit of funds.
A huge chunk of that budget could also be spent on Southampton midfielder Adam Lallana, the emerging 25-year-old who has Liverpool, Tottenham, Manchester United and Chelsea all foaming at the mouth, according to Goal.com.
Seen as a lock by many to make England’s World Cup squad, Lallana has reportedly been valued at £20 million and its believed Southampton will be sellers this summer due to a £27 million transfer debt. Lallana has made 31 starts this season and netted nine goals.
Lastly comes the ceaseless speculation of whether Suarez will remain with Liverpool beyond this season. The Sunday Times reported Manchester City’s growing interest to sign Suarez and make a “huge investment” ahead of Sergio Aguero and Edin Dzeko’s possible departure at the end of the season.
Whether it was said tongue-in-cheek or not, Rodgers has stated he believes Suarez’s value lies in the £100 million range. So any attempts from City or the other clubs hoping Suarez has a change of heart, will need to set a new world record fee.