Amidst the news of Nathaniel Clyne’s official signing, some Liverpool fans found themselves caught up today by reports on TalkSport that claimed a deal to bring Christian Benteke to Anfield had been struck. Those reports appear to have been very premature, as journalists with ties to Liverpool and to Benteke’s representatives in Belgium claim the situation in fact remains unchanged.
Liverpool and Aston Villa had appeared to reach an impasse earlier in the week following Liverpool’s raising of their offer to £25M. The club have since signalled is the maximum they will consider paying for Benteke, while Villa remain insistent that they aren’t interested in cutting a deal and that anybody who wants Benteke will have to pay his £32.5M release clause in full. That leaves the two sides a considerable distance apart.
Fans, meanwhile, remain split over the signing of Benteke, with questions over both how well suited he is for Liverpool’s system and his high price tag. For the striker’s part, Liverpool reportedly remains Benteke’s preferred destination despite interest from Tottenham, who have been rumoured to be considering offering Emmanuel Adebayor to Villa in part-exchange, and it expected a deal will eventually be done.
With Carlos Bacca off the market and rumours linking Liverpool to Salomon Rondon dying down, even if a deal for Benteke isn’t as close as TalkSport reported, the 24-year-old Belgian international remains Brendan Rodgers’ clear top striker target.