Saturday 17 March 2018

Liverpool close in on £16 million deal for Real Madrid star Asier Illarramendi

Asier Illarramendi is set for a move to Liverpool
Asier Illarramendi is set for a move to Liverpool

Liverpool are a step closer to securing the transfer of Asier Illarramendi.

And The Daily Mail claims Real Madrid are already lining up his replacement - joining the race to sign Arsenal target William Carvalho.

Rafa Benitez, who has taken over at the Bernabeu, is currently assessing his squad and Brendan Rodgers is thought to be weighing up a £16 million offer for Illarramendi, which he thinks may be enough to tempt the Spanish giants into selling the highly-rated 25-year-old.

Liverpool, meanwhile, have been given a HUGE transfer boost, reports L'Equipe, with Lyon's Alexandre Lacazette ready to hand in a transfer request.

The Reds have been monitoring Lacazette for months and they've been alerted after talks over a new deal with Lyon collapsed.

And The Independent says Liverpool are willing to pay £28 million to sign the forward, who scored 27 goals in 31 matches last term.

Raheem Sterling insists the complete breakdown in his relationship with Rodgers is the reason he wants to quit Liverpool.

The Mirror reports that the England international claims Rodgers has continually broken promises to keep conversations private and that Sterling insists he would stay at Anfield if a different manager was in charge.

Man City have already had two bids turned down and a third offer is now NOT believed to be imminent - although when it does come it will be for less than the £50 million Anfield chiefs want.

Read more: Raheem Sterling's 'mobile number' posted online after winger calls in sick for Liverpool training

Sterling's efforts to leave Liverpool are intensifying by the day, and the England winger has angered his club by failing to report to training.

Sterling, 20, contacted coaching staff to say he was feeling 'ill' and unable to participate. Today's Daily Telegraph reports how a suspicious Liverpool dispatched one of their medical team to Sterling's home on Merseyside to establish if he was genuinely suffering.

The club suggested later that they expected Sterling to return to training on Thursday, but such is the air of mutiny surrounding the winger his every move is now being viewed with cynicism.

If there is any suggestion that he is refusing to train without justification he will face disciplinary action - which usually means a fine of two weeks wages. In Sterling's case, that amounts to £70,000.

In a further twist, The Daily Mail reports that West Brom striker Saido Berahino has parted company with Aidy Ward, the controversial football agent behind Sterling's transfer fiasco.

Ward is even quoted as saying: "I’m no longer working with Saido. You'll have to ask him for the reasons. With Raheem, there has been a breakdown in trust between him and Brendan Rodgers."

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