Liverpool have rejected a £13million bid from Manchester City for defender Daniel Agger – but it looks like only the start of a difficult few weeks if the Reds are to keep their man.
According to the Daily Mirror, despite turning down the offer from the Premier League champions, Liverpool are braced for tough battle to hang on to the Danish defender who has allegedly told boss Brendan Rodgers that he wants to leave.
And Man City aren’t the only high-profile side interested in the player.
Barcelona are also allegedly targeting the defender as they look to bolster a back line that has been rather threadbare in recent seasons.
Former Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano along with Sergio Busquets have both been called upon to play in the heart of their defence and, with Carles Puyol getting on in years, and Gerard Pique coming under criticism last term, Barca are in need of proven quality.
Losing Agger would be a huge blow to Rodgers as he sets about his task of once again making Liverpool a major force in English football.
Agger formed an excellent and somewhat underrated central defensive partnership with Martin Skrtel last term that saw the Reds finish the season with the third best defensive record in the Premier League.
Liverpool are currently out at 25/1 to win their first Premier League title and are 19/10 joint fifth favourites with Tottenham Hotspur to finish in the top four – although those odds will surely lengthen if they lose the influential Agger.