City identify Reds stopper as target in defender chase.
Liverpool could face a fight to keep Danish defender Daniel Agger, with Manchester City joining Barcelona as potential suitors for the 28-year-old, it has emerged.
The centre-back was recently made vice-captain of the club by manager Brendan Rodgers, though he is understood to be considering his future as he seeks a move to a team in the Champions League.
Liverpool have struggled to make the top four in recent seasons, leading to a number of key players growing frustrated and moving on, and star striker Luis Suarez is another player who spent much of this summer trying to force a transfer away from Anfield.
Agger’s performances have attracted a lot of attention from La Liga champions Barcelona, who are keen to improve defensively after some disappointing results against the big sides last season. They have so far failed in attempts to land Chelsea star David Luiz, who is valued at £50million by his club, leading Barca to consider other targets. Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny is thought to be on their radar, as is Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen, but the Liverpool man seems to be next on their agenda.
Manchester City have defensive issues as well, with new manager Manuel Pellegrini far from impressed with his side’s displays so far in pre-season, despite the club boasting top talent such as Vincent Kompany and Matija Nastasic at the back. They were recently badly exposed in a 3-1 friendly defeat to rivals Arsenal.
Real Madrid’s Pepe was thought to be a prime target for Pellegrini, and City are expected to make a final offer of £20million to the Spanish giants for the 30-year-old.
However, they are not optimistic of landing the Portuguese international, and have identified Agger as another possible option, as well as Schalke youngster Kyriakos Papadopoulos.
City’s summer spending so far has seen top attacking talents in Jesus Navas, Alvaro Negredo and Stevan Jovetic arrive at the Etihad Stadium, as well as Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho, but while the club look well stocked attacking-wise, their new boss clearly sees room for improvement defensively.
Reds manager Rodgers has insisted that Agger won’t be sold, and the Northern Irishman will be particularly keen not to see one of his best players to go a Premier League rival, which could lead to more frustration for City and Pellegrini.
Another player has recently made the switch between the two clubs, with Ivorian defender Kolo Toure leaving City for Liverpool on a free transfer earlier in the summer.