Last week I wrote of Liverpool’s interest in Barcelona forward Cristian Tello.
Reports from Spain suggested Brendan Rodgers was keen to activate a release clause in the 21-year-old’s contract, a year after failing with a loan bid for the Spaniard.
While Tello was keen to remain at the Nou Camp, his future was said to rest on the short-term destination of Barcelona teammate Isaac Cuenca.
Should Cuenca extend his loan deal with Ajax for another season, Tello would almost certainly stay in Catalonia. But should Cuenca return, Tello would find himself with a seemingly impenetrable wall of competition for a starting place.
The latest reports from Holland suggest that the extension of Cuenca’s loan move has hit problems, with Ajax’s director of football Marc Overmars citing issues over the player’s wages.
Speaking to De Telegraaf, the former Arsenal winger said, “Currently the wage is a problem.”
It has also been claimed that the loan fee for Cuenca is too high and that Ajax will only continue negotiating for the next two weeks.
Should a deal not be struck by then, it is likely the 22-year-old will return to Spain, which may prompt Liverpool into their much touted move for Tello.
Cuenca’s time in Holland has been ineffective, with injury and a lack of goals suggesting the current Eredivisie leaders could do without him. And Liverpool will hope that is the case.
Tello’s release clause currently stands at £8.4million. But should he become a more regular feature of the Barcelona side next season, that fee could rise to £13.5million.
Reports last week suggested Tottenham are also interested in Tello’s services, as they seek to rejuvenate an under-performing strike-force.
So if Rodgers sees the young Spaniard as an ideal addition to a forward line that will be lacking Luis Suarez for the first six games of next season, he should act soon.
If he doesn’t, it seems others are more than happy to.
Should Liverpool make a move for Tello? And who else should they attempt to sign this summer?
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