Football

Liverpool & Arsenal track €20m Spanish midfielder

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Arsenal and Liverpool are both tracking Real Betis midfielder Benat with a view to making a January bid, reports Spanish daily AS.

The 25-year-old has attracted interest from a number of clubs, after a series of impressive performances for the La Liga outfit.

Benat has made great forward strides in recent years, and has established himself in Vicente del Bosque's national team squad.

Reds boss Brendan Rodgers is on the lookout for technically gifted players to add to his Anfield ranks when the transfer window reopens, and has been alerted by the fact that Benat has a €20million release clause written into his current contract.

However, Liverpool could face competition from Arsenal, as Arsene Wenger continues his search for a midfield partner for Spanish duo Mikel Arteta and Santi Cazorla, at the Emirates Stadium.

A product of the Athletic Bilbao youth academy, Benat would fit nicely into either playing system, with both sides having an emphasis placed on high-intensity, possession-based football.

Betis are believed to have knocked back previous enquiries up to the value of €15million for the playmaker, but the club's director has been forced to concede that Benat could leave in January, even though he is under contract at the Manuel Ruiz de Lopera Stadium until 2014.

"We can't rule out the possibility that Benat could leave in the winter," Jose Antonio Bosch Valero told Spanish radio station Onda Cero. "Negotiations on a [contract] renewal are fluid, but so far no progress has been made because the positions are so different.

"We realise that Benat may earn more at other clubs than at Betis."

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Topics:
Arsenal
Football
Premier League
Liverpool

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