When Liverpool despatched Jan Kromkamp back to his native Netherlands prior to the closure of the summer transfer window, Benitez was confident in bringing in Lucas Neill from Blackburn to provide some protective cover for right back Steve Finnan.
But Blackburn Rovers, the Australian’s club, refused to do a deal at the right price with Liverpool even with Neill’s contract entering it’s final 9 months. Rafa held firm and didn’t do the deal, describing Blackburn’s valuation as ‘over-priced’. (They wanted £2 million and Stephen Warnock). So here we are approaching the January window and Blackburn will have to either let their defender go for a nominal fee or lose him for nothing next Summer.
Steve Finnan has played 24 games for the reds already – Rafa resting him in the League Cup and in one Premiership game. Reports today suggest that Liverpool’s inability to reach a deal in August may cost them as several clubs are now believed to be interested in the Aussie.
Spurs and Newcastle are said to be interested with Barcelona of all sides monitoring the player. Today’s Daily Mirror suggested that AC Milan are also following the progress of the right back who can also play in the centre.
The valuation of the player will be expected to be around £1.5 million in January – within easy reach of all the clubs mentioned. If Rafa is serious with his interest then it looks like he will no longer be able to hold out until the summer to ensnare the Australian.