The match between Champions League holders Bayern Munich and CSKA Moscow last night would have had many admiring the world-class stars at the Bavarian sides disposal as they romped to a 3-0 win.
However, for Everton and Liverpool it was the involvement of one of CSKA's players that would have been of more interest, as they look to plan for potential signings in the January transfer window.
The player in question is Keisuke Honda; described as the 'Japanese Ronaldo' who first caught the world's attention with his performances at the 2010 World Cup after moving to CSKA Moscow the year before.
Honda, who is available on a free transfer after his contract with the Russian outfit expires in January, has been the subject of transfer speculation all summer with reported interest from European heavyweights AC Milan and Arsenal alongside the Merseyside clubs.
Although an expected move to AC Milan fell through in the summer, Honda himself has been keen to emphasise that he has more clubs interested in him than the Italian giants, after confirming last week that he would be leaving Russia in January.
"Milan? They are an option, but not the only option," Honda said.
"When the time comes, I will make a decision. I have now decided I will leave my club (CSKA) at the expiry of the contract."
However, Honda's appearance in last night's Champions League match means that he is now cup-tied within Europe, were he to move; a situation that is likely to put off any move AC Milan or Arsenal were considering for the Japanese play-maker.
With clubs reluctant to sign players who would not be available for every game in an ever-lengthening season, the Merseyside club's lack of European football may well work in their favour as they look to bolster their squads in the forthcoming transfer window.
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