Liverpool line up PSG playmaker as latest heir to Gerrard’s throne

On the eve of his final Anfield appearance, speculation over Steven Gerrard’s potential successor at Liverpool is intensifying with news Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Javier Pastore is being courted.

The notion of filling Gerrard’s boots is a little absurd given the 17-seasons’ worth of brilliance the skipper has laid down as a marker, though Pastore is a very exciting talent nonetheless.

The Argentine is still only 25 and has chipped in six goals and 10 assists in all competitions for the Ligue 1 champions elect this season.

Being a regular starter for the Parisians makes the potential fee fairly high, though latest developments suggest PSG are willing to sell.

Mid-season contract talks broke down and with only a year left on his current five-year-deal his time at the Parc des Princes could be cut short or PSG risk him walking for free next summer.

The PSG star has made 45 appearances for Laurent Blanc’s side this term, but after four seasons in the French capital it is believed that he may be open to a fresh challenge.

Pastore is the typical, versatile attacking midfielder of the modern era, able to operate in the advanced wide positions or slotting in as a more traditional number 10.

His best return of goals remains the 16 he fired during a sparkling debut campaign in Ligue 1 after signing from Serie A side Palermo in summer 2011.

Given Liverpool’s distinct dearth of regular scorers in 2014/15, Pastore’s eye for a goal will be very attractive to manager Brendan Rodgers as he looks to push his side on in 2015/16.

Meanwhile, Gerrard is a 15/8 shot to leave Anfield behind with a goal when Crystal Palace visit for Saturday’s teatime kick-off.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.