This weekend has seen Liverpool added to the growing list of clubs linked with a move for Fiorentina forward Adem Ljajic.
Sound familiar? Well he will to Manchester United fans, as they would have signed the Serbian in 2010 were it not for a work permit failure.
In the end he found himself at Fiorentina in Italy, and has gone on to make a name for himself in his own right in that time.
Last season, playing as an advanced midfielder, was his best yet - scoring 12 times in 31 appearances. Withj that in mind he was expected to be one of the key members of a Fiorentina squad who were pushing for the Serie A title this season - instead he has been arguably Italian football’s biggest transfer saga of 2013.
The 21-year-old’s current contract in Florence expires at the end of the season, and considering his talent, age and contract affected price-tag - plenty of teams have come a knocking.
So far Fiorentina have rejected all approaches, but not for long. They have offered the player a new deal and if it is not signed by this Tuesday, tomorrow, he will be sold this summer.
But they won’t be selling him to any willing party.
AC Milan have long been credited with the strongest interest in the player, but they fell afoul of Fiorentina earlier in the summer. They reportedly approached the player’s agent before the club, which incensed La Viola president Andrea Della Valle.
And over the weekend the club released this statement:
“If Adem does want to go, we’ll only sell him to a club that behaves correctly with us and within the sporting rules, which means speaking to the club before the player. He will not remain here without signing a renewal, as that would not be right. We offered him an excellent contract. If he considers it to be adequate, then that’s fine. If not, he will leave…Everyone has spoken to the player and there’s no need to say anything else. The final decision is only down to Adem.”
Atletico Madrid and AS Roma are also said to be keen on an approach, while this statement would effectively rule out the original front-runners AC Milan, as patience appears to have worn thin very quickly with the Rossoneri.
So if Liverpool can ‘behave correctly’ they could certainly have a bargain on their hands.
image: © yoca91