Liverpool confident blocked Aspas deal will be finalised
Published 14/06/2013 | 18:43
Liverpool are adamant their deal to sign Celta Vigo forward Iago Aspas will go through despite claims it has been blocked by the Spanish Football Federation because of a paperwork wrangle.
The Reds last night announced a £7.7million transfer had been agreed in principle, subject to the necessary documentation.
A report has claimed the Spanish federation (RFEF) has put a hold on the deal because Liverpool negotiated with an agent who was not the player's official FIFA-licensed representatives.
However, Liverpool have been diligently working on the deal for several weeks and Press Association Sport understands they are not concerned by claims it will be halted by the authorities.
The Reds' hierarchy are "perfectly relaxed" about their role in the transfer as they believe it is an issue for the player and his various representatives to sort out and insist there is no suggestion of impropriety on their part.
Suggestions Celta are furious about the way the deal has been handled are not supported by their announcement of the deal.
"The club would like to express their sincere thanks to the player for his unparalleled commitment and dedication and courage with which he defended the blue shirt from his childhood as Iago joined Celta when he was eight years old," said a statement on celtavigo.net.
"His performance and contributions have been extraordinary and Iago is already part of the history of this club, an entity he carries in his heart from a very young age.
"The club wishes him great success in his new career in the Premier League."
No-one from the RFEF or Celta Vigo was available for comment.
With Liverpool confident the Aspas deal will be completed they hope to make significant progress in deals for long-term targets Sevilla midfielder Luis Alberto and Sporting Lisbon defender Tiago Iloris next week.
Alberto was on loan at Barcelona B this season but the Catalan club had until yesterday to offer the 20-year-old a permanent contract.
Liverpool are unaware of any movement on that front and it is understood the club have already negotiated a deal with Sevilla to bring the youngster to Anfield.
Ilori is another player on whom the Reds have been keeping close tabs and while there has been a disagreement between clubs over the centre-back's value the player is keen to move to Merseyside and is expected to push Sporting to allow him to leave.
Tentative discussions have taken place with Sunderland about the availability of goalkeeper Simon Mignolet but with Jose Reina's future still uncertain there has not yet been an official move for the Belgium international.
Reina was widely expected to join Barcelona this summer as a replacement for Victor Valdes, who informed the Catalan club he would not be signing an extension to his contract.
However, the Spain international wants to see out his final 12 months at the Nou Camp, which may mean there is not an opening for Reina.
"Valdes's agent has officially informed our director of football, Andoni Zubizarreta, that Victor intends to see out his current contract, which we are pleased to hear," president Sandro Rosell told Marca.
Of equal concern is the future of Luis Suarez, who has been publicly courting Real Madrid since heading back to South America for the Confederations Cup with Uruguay.
The 26-year-old, however, insists he is not thinking about using the tournament as means to enhance his chances of leaving Anfield.
"Here I come to play for Uruguay and not thinking what I can do to benefit a transfer benefit," he told a press conference ahead of Sunday's match against world champions Spain.
"My only goal is to win the cup."
Suarez added that "for now there is nothing" in relation to any potential transfer and there was no deadline, although he admitted "family issues" - his wife Sofia moved to Barcelona to study as a teenager which was followed by his transfer to Europe to play for Dutch side Groningen - meant he had an affiliation with Spain aside from the language.
Liverpool have yet to be informed by the player or his agent of a desire to leave but it is likely they are waiting for Real to make their approach in order for loyalty bonuses not to be sacrificed by making a transfer request.
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