Reds courting Cortes
By Francisco Acedo - Sky Sports
Liverpool are reported to be ready to add their Spanish contingent by
signing Mallorca defender David Cortes.
The Reds are thought to have been in talks with the talented full back for
the last week with reports suggesting a deal could be tied up on Monday
ahead of the close of the transfer window.
The right-sided full back has been linked with a move to Atletico Madrid,
but it appears he could be on his way to Anfield.
A Liverpool director was thought to be in attendance at Mallorca's game
with Real Madrid to watch the player in action and to finalise the deal.
Liverpool are thought to have agreed a deal in the region of €3 million
for Cortes with the player being offered a four-year deal.
Reds boss Rafa Benitez has been keen to bolster his defence and Cortes'
possible arrival will raise further question marks over the future of
Steve Finnan with Everton believed to be tracking the Republic of Ireland
Should Cortes arrive at Anfield he will become Liverpool's fifth Spaniard
signing since Benitez took charge in the summer.
Kirkland to be
By Adam Bryant - LFC Online
The Mail On Sunday are reporting that Chris Kirkland could well be on
his way out of Anfield.
According to the newspaper, Rafael Benitez could offload the English
international to Arsenal for £6million.
Valencia's Santiago Canizares would then replace Kirkland as first choice
keeper at Anfield, with Jerzy Dudek dropping to reserve keeper.
Ghana star Kuffour
Premiership big guns Liverpool want to sign Bayern Munich's Ghanaian
defender Sammy Kuffour according to reports in the local German media.
Spanish coach Rafael Benitez wants to bolster his backline for the new
season and has reportedly lodged a four million pound (7.2 million dollar)
bid for African stopper Kuffour.
The 27-year-old Kuffour, who has been at Bayern since 1993, is no longer a
permanent fixture in the first team after the 12 million euro arrival of
Brazilian World Cup winner Lucio in the close season.
Kuffour is keen on a move away from the Olympic Stadium and Munich are
willing to sell the former African Player of the Year as his contract
expires in June 2005 when they risk losing him for nothing.
Kuffour has made over 150 Bundesliga appearances for Bayern winning five
German titles and the holy grail of the Champions League in 2001.
David Moyes has made an enquiry with neighbours Liverpool about the
possible signing of Anfield duo Djimi Traore and Steve Finnan.
The Everton manager is looking to rebuild his defence and Reds boss Rafael
Benitez is willing to sell the pair across Stanley Park.
Traore, 24, is currently recuperating from a torn thigh muscle suffered on
the pre-season tour of America.
But the £500,000 signing from Laval, linked with moves to West Brom and
Bolton earlier in the summer, could make a loan move to Goodison Park with
a view to a permanent deal if Everton meet Liverpool's £1m asking price.
Traore has made 75 appearances for Liverpool but is down the pecking order
at Anfield and would accept the chance to revive his Premiership career at
Moyes, meanwhile, is also interested in Republic of Ireland defender
Finnan who has also been made available by Benitez.
launch Liverpool transfer bid
Reports today claim that Everton have made a £1.2million bid for
Liverpool defender Djimi Traore in an attempt to sign him later this week.
The French defender has failed to make a decent impact at Anfield and
manager Rafael Benitez is keen to get shot of him as soon as possible so
if the reports are true, the club will take what they can for him.
Blackburn Rovers had a £4million bid rejected a couple of seasons back.
Liverpool keen on
Liverpool are interested in signing Luton Town goalkeeper Dean Brill
after scouts watched him in action last Saturday for Town's Under 18's.
The Reds sent a representation to watch the 18-year-old play against
Cambridge United and he certainly impressed them.
Brill has represented Luton at Under 17, Under 19 and reserve levels and
is tipped to challenge for the first team 'keepers jersey this season. He
made his Under 19 debut when he was just 15-years of age.
Luton will be very reluctant to release him.
Joey next Benitez
By Chris Bascombe - Liverpool Echo
Rafael Benitez will sign two more Spaniards today - and then turn his
attention to the capture of Manchester City midfielder Joey Barton.
Xabi Alonso and Luis Garcia are both awaiting the results of medicals
before penning deals with a combined value of £16.7m.
Neither player will be registered in time to face Manchester City at
Having returned to Spain to make his third and fourth major signings of
the summer, Benitez is looking closer to home for his next purchase.
Liverpool have a definite interest in bringing youngster Barton to the
club. Barton was close to signing last season when Gerard Houllier was
The deal was shelved, but Rafael Benitez's scouts have watched the
21-year-old closely and the Huyton-born central midfielder is seen as a
bargain with a bright future.
If the Reds squad is trimmed further, with the likes of Steve Finnan and
Salif Diao seen as potential departures, Liverpool will move quickly to
snap up Barton for a reasonable fee, possibly as low as £1m.
An alternative option is to wait until next January. Barton has just 11
months left on his current contract and could sign a pre-contract
agreement with Liverpool on January 1.
City would rather cash in now than lose Barton on a free Bosman transfer
and the player is also anxious to join the Reds as soon as possible.
Until more players depart Anfield, the youngster - who is part of the City
squad travelling to Anfield tomorrow - will have to be patient.
Reds agree deal for Garcia
Barcelona have reached an agreement over the transfer of midfielder
Luis Garcia to Liverpool, according to reports in the Spanish media.
Sports dailies Marca and Sport claim that the deal has already been
agreed, although Barcelona are yet to make an official announcement.
If the reports are correct, Luis Garcia would be the third Spanish player
to join Rafael Benitez's Liverpool side this summer following the
transfers of Josemi and Antonio Nunez.
Real Sociedad midfielder Xabi Alonso is also close to sealing a deal with
the Merseyside club.
Reds up Garcia offer
By Peter O'Rourke - Sky Sports
Liverpool have made an improved bid to try and lure Barcelona winger
Luis Garcia to Anfield.
The Reds have so far been rebuffed in their attempts to bring the Spanish
international to England.
Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is keen to bring the midfielder to Anfield as
he finalises his rebuilding plans.
Benitez is a big fan of Garcia having had him while he was in charge of
Tenerife and he also tried to sign him at former club Valencia.
Garcia has admitted he is flattered at Liverpool's interest, but that he
is happy to stay and fight for his place at Camp Nou.
Benitez is refusing to concede defeat in his battle for Garcia and has
offered him an improved deal to take him to Liverpool.
Garcia is now seriously thinking over the offer with his family and he is
expected to make a decision on his future this weekend.
Barca are willing to sell Garcia after a busy summer in the transfer
market and with his first team chances looking limited he could be tempted
into leaving for Liverpool.
Reds to enter
By Thomas Zeh - Sky Sports
Rafa Benitez's Liverpool could be set to enter the race for Bayern
Munich's wantaway defender Sammy Kuffour, according to reports in the
The Ghana international has just a year left on his current contract at
The Olympic Stadium and has already been made available for transfer by
new Bayern coach Felix Magath.
Interest from Juventus, Olympiakos and Hamburg has so far failed to result
in a bid, but Liverpool could now be ready to swoop.
Kuffour, who has dropped behind Lucio, Thomas Linke, Martin Demichelis and
Andreas Gorlitz in the pecking order, is desperate to find a new club and
he could find salvation in the shape of Liverpool.
Benitez is looking to bolster his defensive options, even though he has
already added Spaniard Josemi this summer.
Sami Hyypia and Stephane Henchoz are the only recognised centre backs in
the first team squad at present, although Jamie Carragher, Igor Biscan and
Josemi can all fill in if needed.
The 27-year-old Kuffour could now represent the perfect addition for
Liverpool who have been linked with moves for the likes of Fabricio
Coloccini, Michael Dawson and Roberto Ayala over the past few weeks.
Bayern would want around €6 million (£4 million) for Kuffour, who came
through the youth ranks at the club.
Benitez keen to buy
Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez is weighing up a cut-price move for
Manchester City midfielder Joey Barton.
Merseysider Barton, who is in the final year of his City contract, was
linked with a move to Anfield under Gerard Houllier last season.
And despite the managerial change, Liverpool's interest in the England
Under-21 international remains strong with the 21-year-old discussed at
Barton, who shares the same agent as close friend Steven Gerrard, would
relish a move to Liverpool but Reds officials are reluctant to meet City's
However, despite the expected arrival of Xabi Alonso, the signing of
Antonio Nunez and the possible capture of Luis Garcia, Benitez - who has
received scouting reports and videos of the midfielder - is considering a
move if the price lowers.
Viola enter Diouf race
By James Pearson - Sky Sports
Bolton could miss out on the signing of El Hadji Diouf as, according to
reports in Italy, Fiorentina have joined the hunt for his signature.
The Trotters have already agreed a deal for the Senegal international with
Liverpool, however the Viola are believed to tried to hijack their move.
The 23-year-old reportedly underwent a medical with The Reebok outfit on
Tuesday, but as yet the deal has no been concluded.
Either way, Diouf is certain to exit Anfield in the near future with the
big-money Lens arrival surplus to requirements under new coach Rafa
Fiorentina, who returned to Serie A this summer following a stunning
demise, are keen to bolster their squad and have been busy in the transfer
The Florence side have brought in Real Madrid marksman Javier Portillo on
a season-long loan, while Ancona's Milan Rapaic has been linked with a
Spurs on Finnan alert
Steve Finnan looks set to be the next departure out of Liverpool with
Tottenham leading the chase for the full-back's signature.
The defender was signed for Fulham for £3.6m only last summer but his
Anfield future was put in doubt by new boss Rafael Benitez's first signing
as Liverpool manager, £2m full-back Josemi.
Michael Owen, Danny Murphy and El Hadji Diouf have all left the Reds in
the past week as Rafael Benitez looks to finance moves for £10.7m Xabi
Alonso and £6m-rated Luis Garcia.
And Finnan could now also be on his way after new Tottenham coach Jacques
Santini registered an interest in the 28-year-old.
And with Antonio Nunez arriving at Anfield this week as part of the
Michael Owen deal with Real Madrid, plus Benitez's desire to land another
player for the right flank, Finnan's days as a makeshift midfielder -
which saw him start the Champions League qualifier against Grazer AK and
Saturday's Premiership opener at Spurs - are shortlived.
Liverpool will listen to offers for the former Fulham favourite but are
only interested in straight cash deals of around £2m.
Blackburn Rovers enquired about Finnan last month but were only interested
in a season-long loan deal and having offloaded Bruno Cheyrou and Diouf on
a temporary basis, to Marseille and Bolton respectively, Liverpool now
want permanent exits.
New Spurs coach Santini is desperate for a new right-back having lost
Stephen Carr to Newcastle and his understudy Stephen Kelly to a long-term
Reds closing in
on Xabi Alonso
LFC Number 1
Xabi Alonso is still set to sign for Liverpool according to new reports
in Spain, despite more recent interest from Real Madrid.
Real Madrid have been long term admirers of the player, and after having a
bid turned down in June, Madrid were tipped to make a fresh approach to
sign Alonso following the collapse of the Patrick Vieira transfer.
But Real have yet to improve on their initial bid of £8million, and now
seem unlikely to improve their offer for the 22-year-old, allowing
Liverpool to make Alonso their next Spanish arrival.
Real Sociedad and Liverpool have already agreed a fee of around
£10.75million, and contract negotiations between representatives of Alonso
and Liverpool are reported to have taken place in London yesterday, with
both clubs hoping to finalise the transfer in the next few days.
Alonso has been included in the Spanish squad to face Venezuela on
Wednesday, but should a move to Liverpool be completed this week, he could
be available to make his debut against Man City at Anfield on Saturday.
the £7m man is wanted by Benitez
By Alan Nixon - The People
Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez wants his old Valencia goal machine
Miguel Angel Mista to fill Michael Owen's boots.
Benitez is poised to raid his former club for the 25-year-old hit man who
bagged a sensational 19 goals in the march to the title last season.
Mista has just one year of his contract at the Mestalla left and could be
available for around £7million, although talks would be tough.
Valencia are bitter with Benitez over his departure for the Kop and legal
battles are still in the air between the pair.
But - like Liverpool - Valencia know that star man Mista could go for
nothing in a year and might head for Anfield then.
Benitez knows Mista inside out on the field and off it. They even share an
agent in Manuel Garcia Quilon, so the boss has a head start in the chase.
Straight-talking Benitez has shown he is a tough customer with his
handling of Owen and he would take the criticism of signing a Spaniard if
Benitez also had good news yesterday when Real Madrid said they would NOT
move for Xabi Alonso, the midfielder he wants to buy.
Real Sociedad have turned down £12million so far but their hopes of an
auction have now been hit as Real target Argentinian Javier Mascharenas.
Benitez's only problem will be finding the cash to buy both Mista and
Alonso, but he is giving it a go.
By Kevin Smith - LFC Online
Liverpool are reportedly keen on signing Sylvain Wiltord, following
Michael Owen's transfer to Real Madrid.
Owen's shock departure leaves Rafael Benitez short of strikers, and he
could snap up the former Arsenal man, who is currently training with
Rennes after being released in the summer.
Reds to sign Barca man
Reports in Spain are claiming that Liverpool have signed Barcelona
winger Luis Garcia.
With the likes of Deco and Guily in the team the 26 year old won't get so
many first team chances so Benitez, who has long admired the player, has
seen the opportunity to pouce for the Spanish International.
The player is left footed but is known to play as a right winger. The fee
is believed to be around £6m.
Alonso on way to
By Francisco Acedo - Sky Sports
LiverpoolLiverpool are understood to have agreed a deal in principle
with Real Sociedad for the transfer of highly-rated Xabi Alonso.
The classy playmaker has been one of Rafa Benitez's chief targets since
taking charge at Anfield and the possible exit of Michael Owen for a
sizeable fee, plus the sale of Danny Murphy to Charlton Athletic, has
facilitated a move for the Spain international.
Although Real Madrid are long-term admirers of the midfielder, who has
been included in Spain's squad for their friendly with Venezuela, Sociedad
were reluctant to do business with another club from La Liga.
It is believed that the Basque outfit have accepted a bid of €16 million
from Liverpool, with a further €2 million to follow depending upon the
success of the Merseysiders over the length of his contract.
Benitez watched Alonso in action during a friendly against Everton
recently but the player was left out of his side's latest warm-up game
Spanish reports claim part of the fee will be used from money still owed
by Sociedad for keeper Sander Westerveld, who moved to Spain some time
Benitez is understandably keen to wrap up a deal swiftly in order to field
his new boy against Tottenham in The Premiership's opening game on
Saturday and also avoid any late complications in terms of rival bids
emerging, particularly from Madrid.
Rafa eyes up Alonso
By Chris Bascombe in Austria - Liverpool Echo
Rafael Benitez will kick-start his Liverpool rebuilding programme with
the signing of Xabi Alonso as Michael Owen heads out of Anfield.
Owen's likely departure will give Benitez some much needed flexibility in
the transfer market, and it seems the Real Sociedad midfielder is the
Liverpool's now certain qualification for the Champions League, following
last night's 2-0 win over AK Graz in Austria, is worth a minimum £10m,
although that cash has already been earmarked to finance the Djibril Cisse
The fact Owen didn't play last night will be worth another £10m in
And Liverpool also picked up £2.5m - which will increase to £3m - when
Danny Murphy's move to Charlton was completed yesterday.
Alonso is expected to join the Reds in a deal worth £10m before this
weekend's Premier-ship opener with Tottenham.
The Basque club revealed negotiations with Liverpool are now at an
A statement last night said: "Liverpool representatives have been in San
Sebsastian where they met Real Sociedad executives."
Liverpool's intention with regards Owen is now clear after he was left out
of last night's Champions League victory over AK Graz.
Owen has been given permission to speak to clubs about a transfer out of
Merseyside and Real Madrid will move quickly to complete his signing.
Barcelona have also made a move for Owen, but Madrid would be his first
In what promises to be a busy week in the transfer market, Liverpool are
also believed to be close to further new signings to parade alongside
Barcelona's Luis Garcia is a target for Benitez. It's also thought Shaun
Wright-Phillips is on list of potential recruits.
with Spurs switch
Tottenham are the latest club to be linked with Liverpool's out of
favour right-back Steve Finnan.
Just twelve months into his Anfield career, the Irish international has
been usurped in the reds starting line up by new Spanish signing Josemi,
and a proposed £2m move to Blackburn has yet to be finalised.
Finnan has also been linked with a move to former club Fulham, but with
Spurs now looking to replace Finnan's Republic of Ireland team mate,
Stephen Carr, who has just left for Newcastle, a move to White Hart Lane
is likely to hold greater appeal for the 28-year-old from Limerick.
Santini had been hoping to hold onto Carr, but Newcastle's dogged
persistence of the full-back has finally paid off and leaves Spurs with
20-year-old Stephen Kelly as their only recognised right-back - although
Mauricio Taricco is likely to start the season in that position.
Republic of Ireland Under-21 captain Kelly impressed when filling in for
Carr last season, but Santini wants to bring in a more experienced
replacement for Carr before the transfer window closes.
Murphy set for
By James Carroll - Shankly Gates
Danny Murphy is set to turn his back on a potential move to Tottenham
Hotspur by signing for Charlton Athletic in a deal believed to be worth
Liverpool confirmed yesterday that they had an offer from Spurs, thought
to be in the region of £3m, for Murphy after he had been told by manager
Rafael Benitez that he would not be a regular starter in the first team.
Charlton and rivals Everton were also mentioned, but it seemed as though
the England international was destined for White Hart Lane, and would
line-up against Liverpool in the season-opener on Saturday.
However, those reports were wide of the mark and Murphy is now set for a
move to The Valley in a deal that could be completed in the next few days.
Ham's Carrick close to Liverpool move
Danny Murphy's imminent switch to Tottenham Hotspur will see in-demand
West Ham midfielder Michael Carrick join Liverpool by the end of the week.
Murphy's departure will mark the arrival of another England international
at Anfield, in the form of West Ham's 22-year-old creative midfielder
The Anfield club accepted a bid believed to be in the region of £3million
from Spurs for Murphy.
Liverpool's Head of Press, Ian Cotton, revealed at the weekend: "I can
confirm that Liverpool have accepted an offer from Tottenham Hotspur for
Carrick's availability has seen a scramble for his signature, with
Arsenal, Charlton, Spurs, Crystal Palace and Everton all mooted to be
interested after Portsmouth's club record £2.5m bid was rejected.
Reports on Merseyside had suggested Carrick was moving closer to an
Everton move, although now it emerges that Liverpool could be the
Carrick alerted a number of top-flight clubs since refusing to sign a new
contract with the Hammers because of his desire to play Premiership
football and further his international experience.
Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez sees Carrick as an ideal midfield partner
for Steven Gerrard who has committed his long-term future to the Reds,
whilst Carrick is dreaming of an Anfield move. He has realised that his
chances of regular first-team football at Arsenal are limited.
West Ham - reluctant to see their star man go - are willing to listen to
offers for Carrick in the region of £4m, but insist that all derisory bids
will be rejected.
Wright-Phillips to replace Murphy?
By Adam Bryant - LFC Online
Shaun Wright-Phillips is being lined-up to replace Danny Murphy
according to press reports.
After accepting a £3m offer for Murphy from Tottenham, Rafael Benitez is
believed to be preparing a £7m bid for the Manchester City winger should
the deal go through.
Spurs have already had a £5m offer for Wright-Phillips rejected, but an
increased offer from Liverpool would be enough to see the 22-year-old move
across the East Lancs to Anfield.
Owen in Real talks
Michael Owen met officials from Real Madrid over the weekend.
Word has reached us that Michael Owen will NOT play tomorrow night in our
Champions League qualifier game against Grazer AK. This would go a long
way to confirming that he may well be looking to ply his trade in Spain
next season, as appearing on the pitch tomorrow night would cup-tie him
for the rest of the season.
Further, we have also been told that Michael and his advisers spent much
of this weekend speaking with representatives of Real Madrid and that
matters will certainly be concluded this week one way or the other.
What we don't know is if he his leaving Liverpool or not. But for the
player to meet officials from another club with only 12 months left on his
contract must mean that something is in the pipeline.
Liverpool want £10m
Rafael Benitez is hoping to fund a £10million raid for Real Sociedad
playmaker Xabi Alonso after sanctioning the shock sale of Danny Murphy.
Liverpool on Sunday agreed a £2.5million fee with Tottenham for the
27-year-old England international after telling Benitez he had to raise
funds before he could spend again.
And the new manager has moved swiftly to land his top target Alonso,
devastating Murphy with the news he was no longer wanted on Friday and
meeting officials from the Spanish club at Goodison Park on Saturday.
Benitez watched the central midfielder produce a stylish first-half
display in Sociedad's 2-2 draw with Everton and hopes to make the Spanish
international his showpiece summer signing before the end of the week.
Liverpool had lined up the 22-year-old as Steven Gerrard's replacement
when the Anfield skipper seemed set to depart for Chelsea.
But now Benitez has made several midfield sacrifices to raise the funds
for them to play alongside each other and hopes Sociedad will relent on a
£12million asking price for their prized asset.
Liverpool hoping to include
defender in player-exchange deal
Liverpool are keen on signing Malaga defender Alexis according to
reports originating from Spain late this evening.
It is claimed that Rafael Benitez is trying to land the player on a
season-long loan as part of the proposed El-Hadji Diouf loan deal.
Since taking over from Gerard Houllier, Rafa has also been linked with
Malaga's Miguel Angel, Juan Calatayud, Javier Dopico and Pedro Perico.
Rovers in Finnan talks
Reports today claim that Liverpool's Steve Finnan is in negotiations
with Blackburn Rovers after Liverpool accepted a £2m bid for the
The player has only been at the club 1 season and has struggled with
injuries and form. If Finnan does leave it is yet ANOTHER of Houllier's
signings to leave and will leave the Reds squad very thin which must
signal signings are on the way.
Time will tell...
BBC Sport Online
Liverpool are interested in signing unsettled Everton midfielder Thomas
Gravesen, according to reports.
Cash-strapped Everton are understood to want £3.5m for the 28-year-old,
who has one year left to run on his contract.
"We've heard the rumours about Gravesen but the manager is keen to keep
him," insisted an Everton spokesperson.
And Gravesen's agent John Sivebaek told BBC Sport he had not been
contacted by Liverpool: "I've haven't heard anything yet but it might come
Gravesen might welcome a move to Anfield as he has become frustrated with
Everton's failure to bring in new players.
Everton boss David Moyes, who faces a new Premiership campaign with a
depleted squad, wants to hold onto Gravesen.
But Sivebaek revealed other clubs were looking at the Danish
"He's a good player and a lot of clubs are very interested in him," said
"But he's got a year to go and if Everton don't want to sell him you can't
"It's a difficult situation with all these stories but he is happy at
Reds eye Spanish star
By Peter ORourke - Planet Football
BarcelonaLiverpool boss Rafa Benitez could be ready to return to Spain
to make his second signing of the summer with Barcelona winger Luis Garcia
reported to be on his wanted list.
Benitez is keen to bolster his midfield options having lost Vladimir
Smicer to long-term injury and is exploring transfer targets.
Liverpool are reported to have made enquiries for Garcia about a possible
loan signing for the season.
Garcia's first team chances seem limited following the arrival of Deco and
Ludovic Giuly at Camp Nou.
Benitez is a big fan of the 26-year-old and tried to sign him when he was
in charge of Valencia.
Garcia, who is predominantly a left-sided midfielder, can play in a
variety of positions and would add options to Benitez's team.
make goalkeeper enquiry
Newspaper reports today claim that Liverpool have made an enquiry for
Derby County's reserve goalkeeper Andy Oakes.
The 27-year-old is available on a free transfer and if the reports are
true, Rafael Benitez wants to sign him to strengthen his options in
Derby boss George Burley is keen to offload Oakes especially as he's one
of Derby's top earners.
Liverpool after Duff?
By Al Campbell - LFC Online
With Vladimir Smicer out injured for six months Liverpool are rumoured
to be interested in signing Damien Duff from Chelsea.
Rafael Benitez has admitted he is looking for a wide midfielder after
Smicer's injury and Damien Duff is his first choice. Duff's place at
Chelsea is under threat after the signing of Arjen Robben.
If Liverpool are unable to sign Duff Benitez may turn his attention to
Barcelona's Luis Garcia.
weighs up new Spanish raid
By Andy Hunter - Daily Post
Rafael Benitez may go back into the Spanish transfer market after
Vladimir Smicer's injury setback intensified his right-midfield dilemma.
The Czech international's season - and his Liverpool career - is in the
balance after he was ruled out of action for six months following surgery
on a cartilage problem on Friday.
And Benitez may attempt to ease his midfield worries by testing
Barcelona's resolve to hang on to rising star Luis Garcia, (pictured).
Garcia, 23, is one of several options open to the Liverpool manager as he
works to a careful budget before the Champions League qualifiers against
Benitez was a confirmed admirer of the right-winger last season when he
was sent out on loan to Atletico Madrid and won their player-of-the-season
Barcelona coach Frank Rijkaard is reluctant to sanction a permanent exit
for Garcia even though major summer signings will again limit his options
at the Nou Camp this term.
The Catalans, who failed in an attempt to take Djibril Cisse on loan this
season, have landed Deco from European champions Porto, Ludovic Giuly from
runners-up Monaco, Brazilian wingback Juliano Belletti, striker Henrik
Larsson from Celtic and Brazilian international Edmilson this pre-season.
And they may listen to offers for another 12-month loan deal for Garcia,
if Benitez steps up his interest.