9 Nov 2013

'He's worth £50m': LFC target who's 'one of world's best' can leave for £25m. Bid?

Liverpool continue to be linked with a January move for ex-Chelsea defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic, and with Brendan Rodgers admitting last night that he wants to sign proven quality in January, a move for the Serbian star would certainly fit the bill.

According to reports in Italy today, Benfica are willing to consider offers in the region of £25m for Matic, which is a much more reasonable figure than the €35m fee reported by Portuguese newspaper A Bola last month:

"Befica's Nemanja Matic is on the radar of Liverpool, who may attempt to sign the Serbian star during the January transfer window.

"Liverpool scouts have watched Matic on several occasions, but the only concerned may be the price tag, which stands at €35m".

Liverpool were linked with Matic in the months leading up to the last January transfer window, but at the time, the midfielder's Agent, Dejan Mitrovic, dismissed any possibility of a move. He told O Jogo:

"He wants to play at least two seasons at the highest level at Benfica before considering other scenarios"

If Liverpool have genuinely scouted Matic, then it appears that Rodgers is aware that Lucas needs some genuine competition, and that in and of itself is a good thing. The Brazilian is a quality player for the Reds, but the club is desperately crying out for a more physical, athletic presence in the centre of the field.

Liverpool's midfield is often overrun in games, and the gap between defence and midfield is sometimes so big that opposition players have all the time in the world on the ball, especially in the second half of games. This was clearly evident again in the recent Arsenal defeat, and Reds legend Ian St. John is convinced that the club needs different options. He told the 5-Times podcast this week:

"In the transfer market, Liverpool need to buy better midfield players; more mobile players who can win the ball and give it to the attacking players. Over the years, we've always had players who could do that. We can't afford not to have that"

In August, fellow Serb Mateja Kezman heaped praise on Matic, claiming that he's one of the best players in the world. He told A Bola:

"If Gareth Bale is worth €100 million, then Matic is worth €50m or more. There are not many like him. He's one of the world's best defensive midfielders. He is tall, strong, has technical ability and all the qualities that make him a top player, and he's ready to play in the best leagues in Europe. He's fantastic"

At the age of 25, Matic is coming into his prime years, and at 6'4, he'd offer a completely different physical challenge for opposing teams. Should the Reds pursue him? Is £25m a fair price?

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