Liverpool are poised to return with an improved offer for Southampton defender Nathaniel Clyne after their opening bid was instantly rejected last week.
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Brendan Rodgers has singled out Clyne as the right back that he would like to replace Glen Johnson, whose contract expires in the summer.
BBC Sport confirmed the news that just days ago the Merseyside club had tried their luck with an initial offer of £10m for the England international, but this was immediately dismissed by the Saints.
The Daily Star now report that Liverpool will quickly return with a second offer, and this is rumoured to be around £15m.
Despite his impressive performances, the fact that Clyne’s contract is set to expire at the St Mary’s Stadium at the end of the 2015/16 campaign, he is available at a lower fee, and the Daily Star claim that the Reds believe £15m to be a suitable offer.
The 24-year-old has enjoyed an excellent year under new manager Ronald Koeman, establishing himself as one of the Premier League’s most impressive right-backs. Only Crystal Palace’s Mile Jedinak (51) and Chelsea’s Nemanja Matic (51) have completed more than Clyne’s 48 tackles in England’s top flight [via ESPN]. The Saints kept 11 clean sheets this season – joint fifth best in the league – and the former Eagles full back has been key.
Liverpool will no doubt face continued criticism for returning to the St Mary’s Stadium for transfer business – perhaps deservedly so after spending the majority of their income from the sale of Luis Suarez on the signings of Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert and Dejan Lovren last summer, who all proved disappointing.
Along with the above trio, the Saints also sold Luke Shaw to Manchester United and Calum Chambers to Arsenal – and it is considerably worrying that not one of these players can be pleased with their season at their new clubs. If, therefore, Brendan Rodgers does secure Clyne’s signature, the pressure will be on for him to maintain his form.