Transfer news – Liverpool land Poulsen, but Mascherano wants out

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Liverpool have completed the signing of Danish midfielder Christian Poulsen from Juventus for an initial fee of £4.5m.

The 30-year-old Poulsen, who operates in a holding role, is seen as a replacement for Javier Mascherano, who has expressed his desire to leave Anfield.

Poulsen has also played for Schalke and Sevilla, with whom he won the Uefa Cup in 2007 – a good omen for Liverpool, who are 9/1 to win the Europa League this season.

Hodgson will know Poulsen better than most having managed him at FC Copenhagen, and the 77-cap Denmark international will bring valuable experience to the Liverpool squad.

Liverpool’s first Premier League game of the season is against Arsenal on Sunday, and Poulsen could make his debut in a match that the Reds are 7/5 to win.

A player who combines rugged physicality with intelligent distribution, Poulsen’s playing style could endear him to his new supporters at Anfield.

And like all good defensive midfielders, Poulsen tends to attract controversy wherever he plays.

His punch on Sweden striker Markus Rosenberg in a Euro 2008 qualifying match earned him a red card which so incensed a Danish fan that he ran onto the pitch and attacked the referee. The match was subsequently abandoned and Poulsen was handed a three-match ban.

Poulsen has also had run-ins with Gennaro Gattuso and former AC Milan manager Carlo Ancelotti, who branded the Dane “a coward” after a fiery 2-2 draw with Schalke.

Could Poulsen boost Liverpool’s domestic hopes too? They are 12/1 to win the Premier League title this season. See the full Barclays Premier League Betting Odds market.

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Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.