Liverpool midfielders Raul Meireles and Alberto Aquilani could both be playing in Italy next season as they await offers from Serie A clubs Inter Milan and Fiorentina respectively, according to reports in The Daily Mail.
Meireles, 28, who was voted PFA Fans’ Player of the Year in his debut season at Anfield, could be parted with and it is believed Liverpool would be willing to accept a bid of £12.5million for the Portuguese star, following the Anfield club’s summer captures of Charlie Adam and Jordan Henderson.
Meanwhile Italy international Aquilani’s agent has claimed that he wanted to stay in Italy after impressing last season on a loan spell at Juventus, ESPN reported.
“Alberto’s thoughts were to stay in Italy, but this was not possible,” Aquilani’s agent Franco Zavaglia said to Radio Sportiva. “He had a positive season (at Juventus).”
Liverpool will be prepared for these departures as the new signings, combined with captain Steven Gerrard’s presence and the emergence of Lucas Leiva, have established a healthy competition for the position of central midfield at Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish will use the funds from the Meireles deal to launch an improved bid for Aston Villa winger Stewart Downing, according to The People.
The Kop club could become locked in battle with Arsenal for £20m-rated Downing with the North London outfit also said to be interested.