It is no secret Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers has targeted Southampton captain Adam Lallana as his summer transfer priority, with reports widespread last week that the Premier League runners up were set to make a bid for the England player.
However, with Southampton holding out for more than the reported £20 million Liverpool were willing to pay for the England world cup ace, the Merseyside club are considering alternatives.
The Liverpool Echo is reporting that Bayern Munich’s winger Xerdan Shaqiri is one such alternative. The Swiss winger, who will play at this summer’s World Cup in Brazil, hasn’t been a regular for the German double champions since his move from Basel two years ago and could be available for £15 million.
In addition, the Daily Star has said Rodgers is considering a move for Barcelona’s Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez, with a bid of £18 million being suggested. Sanchez is said to be unhappy with his lack of starts at the Nou Camp, but will no doubt be on the radar of a number of clubs if available.
With a squad in need of strength depth as Liverpool return to European football next season, Rodgers knows he will need to be prudent in the market this summer as his transfer kitty will not extend into the hundreds of millions. If Southampton stand firm with their valuation of Lallana, either Sanchez or Shaqiri could provide cheaper alternatives with equal pedigree. The fees reported, if accurate, would certainly free up cash for Rodgers to strengthen other areas of his squad.
One area in desperate need of improvement is defence as Liverpool conceded 50 league goals last season, ultimately costing them a first ever Premier League title. Lallana’s Southampton team mate Dejan Lovren is one man Rodgers is said to have identified as a candidate to tighten up his backline.
The 24-year older former Lyon defender, who is set to be selected in Croatia’s World Cup squad, has impressed at St. Mary’s since joining last summer for an estimated £8.5 million so Southampton will no doubt expect a fee in excess of that.
Lovren scored the winner as Southampton defeated Liverpool 1-0 at Anfield in September last year.
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