June - 2009

1806: Report: Barca chase Mascherano
1806: Rafa linked with move for Lodeiro
1606: Liverpool poised to sign Johnson
1306: Eto'o for Masch?
1206: Juventus close to deal for Dossena
1206: Will Saviola be Torres foil?
0806: Reds duo linked with Rovers
0706: Crouch linked with Reds return
0406: Reds move for Distin


Report: Barca chase Mascherano


European champions Barcelona are hot on the trail of Liverpool's Argentine international midfielder Javier Mascherano, Catalan sports daily Sport reported Thursday.

Thew club's head of technical affairs Txiki Begiristain and director of football Raul Sanllehy met with the player's two agents for two hours at a Barcelona hotel, according to Sport, to thrash out a potential deal and "establish the interest of the two parties."

Mascherano has been dubbed unsellable by the Reds' Spanish coach Rafael Benitez, who says he would not even sell the player for 60 million euros.

Rafa linked with move for Lodeiro


Highly-rated Uruguayan midfielder Nicolas Lodeiro is said to have caught the eye of Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez.

The 20-year-old Lodeiro is currently contracted to Primera Division Uruguaya side Nacional.

Lodeiro shone when representing the Uruguay Under 20s in the South American championship played this year in Venezuela.

The playmaker is currently owned by the company BBC Sport, who bought him in February among other young players of the Uruguayan U20 national side.

Liverpool poised to sign Johnson

By Phil McNulty - BBC Sport Online

Liverpool look to have won the race to sign England defender Glen Johnson after agreeing a fee in the region of £17m with Portsmouth.

Reds' boss Rafael Benitez is confident he has beaten off interest from Chelsea in the 24-year-old and expects to make him his first summer signing.

Manchester City had also registered an interest in Johnson, but it is believed Anfield is his preferred destination.

Benitez is now likely to sell Andrea Dossena to help fund the deal.

Johnson, who joined Portsmouth from Chelsea in a £4m deal two years ago, emerged as Benitez's prime target after having an outstanding season at Fratton Park last season.

Benitez is working within financial restrictions in the transfer market this summer, but it is understood Liverpool are still owed money from the deal that took Peter Crouch to Portsmouth last summer.

Spanish defender Alvaro Arbeloa could also be sacrificed to raise cash towards the Johnson deal, with Real Madrid being linked with an £8m move.

He has cemented a place as England's first-choice right-back under coach Fabio Capello and played in the two recent World Cup qualifying victories against Kazakhstan and Andorra.

Johnson signed a new four-year deal at Portsmouth in January, but club officials accepted they could not stand in his way if he was offered the opportunity to move a club playing in the Champions League.

Eto'o for Masch?

By Darren Lewis - Daily Mirror

Samuel Eto'o has been offered to Liverpool by Barcelona in a swap deal as the European champions step up their bid to land Javier Mascherano.

Eto'o, 28, is one of the most sought-after strikers in Europe after failing to agree a new deal at the Nou Camp.

Barca believe offering him to Liverpool for unsettled Mascherano could help to smooth a deal. Reds boss

Rafa Benitez insisted earlier this week that he wasn't willing to sell his Argentine defensive midfielder to Barca "at any price" - even £50million .

But Mascherano's agent, Walter Tamer, also spoke this week about Mascherano's "dream" of playing for the Champions League winners.

And Barca are also well aware of Liverpool's financial woes as well as their lack of depth in attack. Eto'o now has just a year left on his current deal.

Juventus close to
deal for Dossena

Juventus are close to landing Liverpool fullback Andrea Dossena in a £6.5 million deal.

The Italy left-back, 27, signed last July from Udinese for £7m, only made 12 Premier League starts last season and wants to move to guarantee his World Cup place.

Will Saviola be Torres foil?

This is Anfield

Reports from the media in Spain suggest that Liverpool will purchase Javier Saviola, the out of favour striker, from Real Madrid for a figure of around £4.5 million.

The 27 year old Argentine has fallen out of favour at the Bernabeu since the arrival of Klaas Jan-Huntelaar for the Madrid side.

Liverpool were linked with an attempt to sign the player in January when Robbie Keane departed but with important fixtures between Madrid and Liverpool coming up – the deal was effectively dismissed.

However, the player has only one year left on his contract and Liverpool would offer the player an opportunity to get back in to the limelight.

Whilst his goalscoring record is not overly impressive at Madrid, his record at previous clubs Sevilla and Barcelona are.

Reds duo linked with Rovers

By Al Campbell - LFC Online

John Barnes and Jason McAteer have been linked with the Tranmere job.

Barnes, currently manager of Jamaica, and McAteer, a former Tranmere player, are the bookies' favourites to replace Ronnie Moore as Rovers boss.

Paul Ince is also in the running for the job after leaving Blackburn earlier in the season.

Crouch linked
with Reds return

By Matt Ladson - This is Anfield

The Sunday papers always bring a few new rumours to the table and with the transfer window open in less than a month you can expect many more in the weeks to come.

A new name has entered the discussion today though, with former Liverpool striker Peter Crouch the subject of a report in The Mirror.

“Despite severe financial restrictions in place at Anfield, manager Rafa Benitez will attempt to try to land Crouch for as little as £4million” claims Paul Smith.

But with Portsmouth’s prospective new found wealth it seems unlikely they will need to sell at a cut-price.

Crouch left Anfield for Fratton Park last summer for £8m seeking regular first team football.

Another Portsmouth player who has been linked with Liverpool for some time now is full-back Glen Johnson. Reports in the last few days indicate new Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti is also interested in signing the England international and reports on Sunday suggest Chelsea’s willingness to pay over £10m means he will return to Stamford Bridge.

Johnson left Chelsea in 2007 and has cemented himself as England’s first choice right back this season with consistent displays for Portsmouth.

Reds move for Distin

By James Pearce - Liverpool Echo

Liverpool are set to launch a £2million bid to sign Portsmouth defender Sylvain Distin.

Reds boss Rafa Benitez is in the market for a new centre-back following the departure of Sami Hyypia to Bayer Leverkusen and believes the 31-year-old Frenchman fits the bill.

Distin only has one year left on his contract at Fratton Park and recently admitted his future was uncertain.

“Right now I expect to be here next season but I’m not in touch with anyone and tomorrow things can change,” he said.

“There may be a new manager with his players and I won’t play. A lot of things can happen in the coming months.

“All I want to do is go away on holiday, relax and refresh my mind and then I will come back and see what happens.”

Bolton and Tottenham have also been linked with a move for the versatile 6ft 3ins defender who can play centre-back or left-back.

Distin started his career at French non-league side Joue-les-Tours and had spells at Tours and Gueugnon before he was snapped up by Paris St-Germain in 2000.

He spent the 2001/02 campaign on loan at Newcastle before making a £4million move to Manchester City.

His five-year stay at City yielded over 200 appearances but he left in the summer of 2007 after his contract expired.

Liverpool were interested in him two years ago but he made the switch to Portsmouth in order to get regular first team football.

He led Pompey to FA Cup glory in 2008 and has played 93 games for the south coast club.

Thor Zakariassen ©