Disappointed Liverpool midfielder Joe Allen would be biggest loser if Reds clinch Illarramendi deal

Joe Allen has most to lose from Liverpool signing Asier Illarramendi.

Liverpool are battling to sign Spanish midfielder Asier Illarramendi, report newspaper Marca - who claim a £16 million has been submitted to Real Madrid.

The central midfielder would be a classy addition to the Liverpool first team - and place Welsh midfielder Joe Allen under real threat.

Allen was one of Brendan Rodgers' first signings at Liverpool, but three seasons in is yet to win over supporters.

Last season he played 21 Premier League games of a possible 38, his lowest total since arriving at Anfield.

Allen manages to fall in between where a quality midfielder can contribute. He has scored only two league goals in three seasons and provided no assists - yet is not effective as a midfield destroyer either.

The signing of Illarramendi would put Allen under pressure, for they are similar in style - yet the Spaniard is the one who will be seen as deserving of chances, with the Welshman already having had three seasons worth already.

A deal for Illarramendi rests on the decision of new Real boss and former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez.

Allen is vulnerable after the sacking of coach Colin Pascoe, who helped persuade Rodgers to sign him from Swansea, with the midfielder reported by the Liverpool Echo stating he is 'very disappointed' with the decision.

In midfield despite losing Steven Gerrard, Liverpool have key man Jordan Henderson, have signed James Milner, will look to play Emre Can in his favoured position, and retain Lucas Leiva. There are also young guns like Jordan Williams - and if they sign Illarramendi too, Allen is most likely to find himself squeezed out.

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