Sport Soccer

Sunday 21 January 2018

Liverpool facing £20m loss on Andy Carroll

Ian Herbert

Liverpool would have to accept a cut-price £15m deal, at best, to sell striker Andy Carroll this summer.

And, with no optimism at Anfield about him commanding even that kind of price, a loan deal is seen as a way of building up the value of a player whose £35m purchase was instrumental in the dismissal of the club's former director of football, Damien Comolli.

A hit of more than 50pc on Liverpool's initial outlay to Newcastle United last year would be punishing but that appears to be the best the club can expect for the 23-year-old striker in the transfer market this summer.

A £10m Newcastle bid to buy him back cannot be ruled out, particularly if Demba Ba triggers the release clause in his own contract, with Liverpool having a long-standing interest in the Senegal forward.

The appeal of Carroll to Newcastle will not have diminished now that the pursuit of the FC Twente striker Luuk de Jong has fizzled out, with the Dutchman confirming Borussia Monchengladbach as his destination of choice.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers is also looking for a player to carry out the attacking role from midfield that only Steven Gerrard is capable of in the current squad.

There has been no approach to Fulham for Clint Dempsey, despite the fact that Rodgers is a great admirer of the American, and no move is imminent.

With Liverpool's and Fulham's valuations of him likely to differ considerably, Dempsey is a player to whom Rodgers may return later this summer if other attempts to strengthen his attack fail.

Having insisted on the director of football responsibilities at Anfield, Rodgers is determined not to push Fenway Sports Group for deals which would represent poor business.

Dempsey is 29 but the fact that he would provide no sell-on value would not be a problem for Rodgers, who sees him as a player who would fit into the kind of 4-3-3 system he envisages for the new season. But Dempsey's departure would deprive Martin Jol's side of a key component -- which points to a likely disparity in valuations.

Rodgers, who wants to conclude two signings this week, has said he will give Carroll the chance, during Liverpool's pre-season tour, to prove his willingness to apply himself to the professional disciplines that are such an important part of his philosophy.

However, Rodgers' interest in both Roma's Fabio Borini and Dempsey suggests he is looking elsewhere for strikers. There was an unmistakable impression from his public discussion of his new squad on Monday that he has already decided which players conform to his plans.

Rodgers has made clear he wants to give a chance to those young players who did not prosper at Anfield under Kenny Dalglish last season.

Thus the club announced a new contract yesterday for 20-year-old Jonjo Shelvey, who has found himself on the fringes of the squad at Anfield, making only 37 appearances in all competitions since joining from Charlton in May 2010.

Roma yesterday confirmed Liverpool's desire to buy Borini. "There is a real interest for Borini," said sporting director Walter Sabatini at Roma's pre-season training camp in Riscone. "We are evaluating the situation with (Roma general manager) Franco (Baldini)."

Rodgers says he has had frequent text contact with Luis Suarez since becoming manager, which he views as a good pointer towards Liverpool fending off any attempt by Juventus to lure the Uruguayan to Serie A, following his difficulties last season in the Premier League.

"We have exchanged lots of texts," Rodgers said.

"He sent me a text on the first morning, wishing me luck. He has really bought in to what we are trying to do. He was really excited about how we played at Swansea last year. He is really keen and looking forward to playing in a similar sort of model."

Chelsea, meanwhile, are set to pay Internacional £20m for 20-year-old Brazilian playmaker Oscar, who scored a hat-trick in the final of the U-20 World Cup last year.

They are also planning a fresh £20m bid for German international striker Andre Schurrle which, if successful, could lead to the departure of Daniel Sturridge this summer. (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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