Anfield side keen to add more steel to their midfield with a move for Etihad Stadium battler.
Liverpool are considering making a January move for Man City midfielder Nigel de Jong as they look to add more steel to their midfield. The Anfield side had reportedly been linked with the Dutch international in the summer and now that the tough tackler has found himself ousted from the first team a move when the transfer window re-opens is on the cards.
Kenny Dalglish’s need to bring in another defensive midfield option has increased now that Brazilian Lucas Leiva has been sidelined for the rest of the season following a knee injury sustained during Liverpool’s Carling Cup Quarter Final at Stamford Bridge.
The former Ajax and Hamburg man has just turned 27 and is keen to get regular first team football so as to maintain his presence in the Dutch international set-up going into the Euro 2012 finals next summer and for that reason the batting defensive midfielder will be open to a possible move away from Man City.
De Jong had been a virtual ever present in his first two and a half seasons at the club, notching up 76 Premier League appearances in the process but this season Roberto Mancini has changed the way he’s set up his Man City side, preferring to be more attacking formation with more attacking options and opting for Yaya Toure and Gareth Barry as a central midfield pairing leaving no room for the Dutchman.
Thus far this season Nigel De Jong has started just three out of 14 Premier League matches and whilst he may benefit from Yaya Toure’s participation in the African Cup of Nations he knows that given the great form his side have shown, Mancini will then simply revert to leaving the Amsterdam born man back on the bench.
Though Liverpool have a large number of central midfield options, with the likes of Steven Gerrard, Charlie Adam, Jay Spearing, Jordan Henderson, Alberto Aquilani (out on loan at AC Milan) and Jonjo Shelvey, none of these alternatives are strictly defensive minded, hence the need to consider a move for reinforcements.
The £15m rated Man City man would help give Dalglish more options and indeed De Jong could be employed in the same line-up as Lucas, as the 24 year old Brazilian international is also known for roving forwards and has shown a lot more confidence on the ball over the past 18 months during which time he has matured into a more rounded performer.
Mancini has been advised to trim his massive Man City squad ahead of UEFA regulations relating to the Financial Fair Play rule and therefore may consider offers for De Jong and the table topping side may feel that they can afford to sell the bench warmer for the right price. City paid Hamburg £18m for his services back in January 2009, back when Mark Hughes was in charge.