Liverpool head towards the end of the season knowing that defence will be the first priority when the transfer window re-opens. While most of Brendan Rodgers' moves to date have sought to shore up either midfield or attack, the defensive options at the Liverpool manager's disposal today are the same ones he inherited from Kenny Dalglish before him.
Now, with Jamie Carragher retiring in the summer while Martin Skrtel and Sebastian Coates remain well out of favour, it's almost impossible to imagine a scenario where an overhaul of the backline isn't the manager's next step. And when it comes to what that overhaul will look like, many have come to believe the first step will be Rodgers reuniting with Swansea centre half Ashley Williams.
Not all are sold on the merits of the 28-year-old Wales and Swansea captain, but he would certainly fit the bill when it comes to replacing some of Carragher's veteran savvy. He would also fit the bill as another player the club's management and scouting staff have previously worked with, joining a growing list that includes Joe Allen, Fabio Borini, and Daniel Sturridge.
According to Williams' agent, though, a move to either Liverpool or Arsenal—the two most-rumoured destinations for the defender—is the furthest thing from the player's mind.
"He is happy [at Swansea]," insisted Jamie Moralee when asked about the status of his client. "His family are there with him and he is playing better than ever because Swansea have given him a platform. He has been captain for much of this season and he thrives on that responsibility.
"If he is drawing the attention of the big boys then that is a good thing, because it shows he is developing and Swansea are developing. But he has never knocked on the chairman's door and said he wants to leave and he has never handed in a transfer request."
Even if a deal isn't yet in the works, that doesn't mean one couldn't yet happen. Still, if Liverpool were interested in Williams one would expect preliminary discussions to already be under way—and that's something Moralle flat-out denies is taking place.
"There's nothing other than newspaper speculation at the moment," he continued, "and, as you know, that comes when people are playing well. But that's all it is. If one of the big four, five, or six decide to target Ash and put the money down, then there will be a conversation. But it's quite early to even be suggesting this kind of talk."
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