Liverpool Persist in Fight for Barcelona Striker - Report
By IBTimes Staff Reporte | December 14, 2012 8:03 PM EST
Liverpool are considering a transfer for Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez of Barcelona, according to the Express. The 23 year old winger joined the Catalan giants in 2011, from Italian club Udinese, but injuries have robbed him of regular first team appearances. And with the form players like Lionel Messi, Pedro and Andres Iniesta are in, it is difficult to see Sanchez as anything more than a squad player at the Nou Camp.
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers loaned England international Andy Carroll to West Ham United in the summer and summer signing Fabio Borini of Italy has missed the season so far with an injury. This has left only Uruguayan international Luis Suarez as the club's senior striker.
The South American has responded to the challenge, with 10 Premier League goals in 15 games. However, the former Ajax striker does need support and competition to maintain his form and the Anfield club need options to cover and rotate Suarez. The former Swansea City manager, who took charge at Merseyside in the summer, has confirmed he will look to the mid-season window to find Suarez support.
The Reds, according to the Express, face competition from Juventus for their Chilean target. The Italian champions are also short of options going forward, with Fabio Qualgliarella, Alessandro Matri, Mirko Vucinic and Danish international Nicklas Bendtner (on-loan from Arsenal) available to Antonio Conte.
However, of these four, Bendtner has been singularly unimpressive since signing in the summer. And the fact he faces three months out injured means the Turin-based club will almost certainly cancel the loan deal in January. In addition, 28 year old Matri has been little more than a fringe player this season and Serbian Vucinic has not played particularly well either. This leaves only the 29 year old Quagliarella as a reliable striking option, with 25 year old Sebastian Giovinco playing in the hole.
Unfortunately for both interested parties, Sanchez's agent, Fernando Felicevich, has been quoted as dismissing talk of a move from Barcelona.
"In no case will Alexis leave Barcelona. He has returned after injury and played well. Alexis stays in Barcelona. Has no reason to leave. He is at the best team in the world. In addition to that Barca has Messi, a player that everyone can learn from," he explained.
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