The latest somewhat dubious rumours doing the rounds and Rafa has no plans to leave Anfield.
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has been tipped to leave Anfield in the summer by a number of Sunday newspapers today.
Gerrard was in the stands yesterday for Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with Stoke but is now considering a summer departure following the disastrous campaign so far.
A number of clubs are interested in a 30 million pound move for the dynamic midfielder including Manchester City, Real Madrid and Inter Milan. Out of respect for Liverpool, Gerrard is believed to favour a move abroad.
The 29-year-old reportedly lost patience with the club after Liverpool’s FA Cup defeat to Reading in midweek.
A number of sources have claimed Gerrard had a bust-up with Rafa Benitez’s assistant, Mauricio Pellegrino, over the hamstring strain which caused the midfielder’s substitution in the loss to the Royals at Anfield.
Gerrard is expected to miss the crucial clash with Spurs on Wednesday along with fellow injury victims Fernando Torres and Yossi Benayoun .
This season, Gerrard has scored five goals and provided six assists in 22 appearances for Liverpool. The England midfielder is contracted to the Merseyside giants until the end of season 2012/2013. (IMScouting)
As with any story linking Stevie G with an Anfield exit, this one should be taken with a large dose of salt. The most shocking thing about the story in the tabloids is the fee placed on Gerrard’s head, £30m! Is that a joke? Given the recent mega inflation in the transfer market brought on by Real Madrid and Manchester City this valuation is ridiculous. Its only £6m more than former Bluenose Joleon Lescott for god sake! Clearly the England man is worth at least £50m but hopefully this is all a moot point as there is no chance of this happening whatsoever.
Arda Turan: Liverpool in £13M Babel Swap Deal for Dazzling Turkish Star
According to reports in the Turkish press, Rafa Benitez rejected the recent bid from Birmingham for Ryan Babel as they are in negotiations with Turkish giants Galatasaray for a swap deal plus cash for their captain and star man Arda Turan. The player was widely expected to leave Galatasaray last summer with the club finishing a highly disappointing 5th in the Turkish league, 10 points behind champions Besiktas. However, it would seem this will now be Arda’s last season with the club before moving abroad although Benitez is trying to push through a deal this month as he looks to claw back a Champions League place by the end of the current campaign.
An added bonus for potential suitors of Arda is the player’s versatility as he can play on either flank or even in a more central role. It’s no surprise that Liverpool are so strongly linked to the golden boy of Turkish football as Rafa Benitez has been looking to add some much needed flair to his strong outfit. The injuries to Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard and Yossi Benayoun have led Liverpool to attempt to push through a deal as soon as possible with the team lacking its most creative and goal scoring talent. (Football Pools)
At this stage I think all Liverpool fans would take just about any deal that would see Ryan Babel leave Anfield and this one is better than most. Arda Turan is a class act and just about ready to give the Premier League a good shot. The Turkish youngster is a top notch performer and could be a very good addition to the side and would add extra drive and creativity to a midfield lacking in direction. It could be that we would have to chuck Galatasaray some cash as well but it would be well worth doing so to catch the diminutive attacker.
Oh yes, and it appears Rafa is going nowhere. He has in fact stated that ‘IF’ he stays it will be for the fans, which is nice of him.