Transfer inflation has hit the English market in a big way this summer. Players that a year or two ago would have cost £20M are going for £30M, players that would have sold for £10M are being purchased for £15M, and even at the bargain end of the market there’s been significant movement.
Liverpool have seen it first hand with Brad Smith, who they sold to Bournemouth for £6M. A few seasons ago, it’s hard to imagine him fetching more than a couple of million. And that is now impacting their negotiations elsewhere, particularly the case of Luis Alberto, who has been priced out of a return to Sevilla.
Sevilla wanted the player back, and by all accounts the player wanted the move to go through, but the Spanish bargain-hunters were only willing to pay £2M for a player they sold for £6.8M three summers ago. According to the Liverpool Echo, the Reds looked at what they had gotten from Bournemouth and said no.
Liverpool said the minimum they would sell Alberto for was £6M given a he spent a solid 2015-16 season on loan with Deportivo de La Coruna, scoring six goals and eight assists in 31 appearances for the La Liga club. With two years left to go on his Liverpool contract, the club feel that’s worth more than £2M.
And in the current market, they’re absolutely right. Still, that didn’t stop Sevilla from giving up the chase. In England, though, there do appear to be suitors who might just be willing to meet Liverpool’s demands. Rumour has it that three Championship sides—Wolves, QPR, and Aston Villa—are in the running.
With that in mind, it appears likely that Luis Alberto will soon be moving on. He won’t, though, be heading back to Spain as so many assumed he would be. He’ll be staying in England, with a chance to build his career at a Championship side with Premier League aspirations.