It seems that the articles regarding possible candidates in the squad rebuilding process are generating interest so the intention is to keep bringing more and more to your attention. All the players in question have been someone or other linked to the Reds, but their inclusion means that there is a possibility that the Reds might, in effect, make an offer for them. Players who seem to be a ‘long shot’ will not be included. In comments made by you, I have read Brede Hangeland mentioned a few times, but I have refrained from including him (so far) only because of his age. The lanky American-born Norwegian will be 30 come next June. That does not make him old; however I feel there are a few more candidates that can come in for the long run and that may offer just as much quality. Here are three more possible candidates for you to comment on.
Fábio Alexandre da Silva Coentrão (23 next month) is considered to be one of the best attacking left-backs in european football today. The Portuguese international currently plays for Benfica, which he chose in place amongst other contenders for his signature such as Real Madrid, Real Madrid and Chelsea in 2007 (he was loaned out in Portugal and Spain and only established a first team regular place in 2009), and recently signed a contract extension until 2016 which will most certainly have an effect on the asking price for his services.
Per Mertesacker is rumoured to be on the move this summer from German giants Werder Bremen. The 26 year old 6ft 6’ central defender for club and country is very much admired by Arsenal and the usual suspects in Serie A. For a lad of his size and height, he is deemed to be very good with the ball and also extremely effective in offensive set pieces. Werder Bremen has set a price tag in the Stg 10 million region, however, this amount will surely not fend off interest from Europe’s top clubs. It is said that Damien Comolli has set his sights on the lanky german with a view to making an offer and bring him to Anfield. Would not be a bad substitute for Kyrgiakos now would he??? Arsenal could give us a run for our money on this one!
Blaise Matuidi is a 23 year old French midfield enforcer currently playing for St.Etienne and is being closely monitored by Liverpool’s Damien Comolli. Reports claim that holding midfielder is on the wish-list of at least another four clubs namely Juve, Roma and Fiorentina in the Serie A, and Schalke in the Bundesliga. St.Etienne value the rising star at Euro 10 million which is not a prohibitive figure for the Reds nowadays. Matuidi has gone up the French Under ranks as has recently been called up to the senior squad by new France manager Laurent Blanc, and is the French club’s captain. Perhaps this is the kind of player one may make a like-for-like comparison with Mascherano. In essence he is a deep lying midfielder with the qualities of a retreated playmaker. If the Reds pursue this talent, given Comolli’s knowledge of the French scene and his contacts at St.Etienne (where we worked between 2004 and 2005), there is a very good possibility that we may fend off other pretenders for his signature.