Liverpool need £200m to be title contenders – McAllister

The Reds, without a league title in 23 years, are currently languish in seventh in the table and the Scot believes that only significant investment can help

EXCLUSIVE
By Paul Clennam

It would take £200 million of transfer spending to turn Liverpool back into Premier League title challengers, according to former Reds star Gary McAllister.

The Merseyside giants’ last league triumph came in 1990 and their most recent meaningful challenge in the 2008-09 season under Rafa Benitez.

In the meantime, Manchester United have overtaken Liverpool as the most successful club in English football, winning 13 of their record 20 league titles under Sir Alex Ferguson.

This season Brendan Rodgers’ men languish in seventh in the Premier League,and McAllister believes that significant investment is required to bring back the glory days.

“I think it’s purely down to finances,” he told Goal.

“For Liverpool to be really competing where they want to be competing – that means winning the league – they’re a couple of hundred million quid away.
 
“They’re going to finish seventh this season, behind Everton, and, if the owners can’t come up with those funds, it’s going to be gradual; developing players, picking players from Europe in that £8m, £9m, £10m bracket and developing them into stars that can compete right at the very top.”

Ter Stegen not ready for Barcelona yet, says Illgner

The 46-year-old has voiced his opinion that a move to Spain could hurt his compatriot’s career at this stage and has advised them to pursue Thibaut Courtois instead

Former Germany international Bodo Illgner, who played for Real Madrid from 1996 until 2001, believes that Borussia Monchengladbach goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen is not yet ready for a move to Barcelona.

The Catalans are in the market for a new shot-stopper after Victor Valdes signalled his intention to leave the club, and the 21-year-old is supposedly one of the leading candidates for the No.1 jersey at Camp Nou.

However, Illgner feels Ter Stegen is not the right candidate as he has advised Barcelona to go for Chelsea’s Thibaut Courtois, who has spent the last two season on loan at Atletico Madrid, instead.

“He [Ter Stegen] is incredibly talented, but also still very young. One should realise that a transfer at his age could affect a career in two ways, both positive and negative,” the former Madrid shot stopper told Spox.

“If you make a mistake at such a big club and get off to a bad start, it would leave a big mark on his career.

“For me, someone else is the ideal candidate and that’s Thibaut Courtois, currently on loan at Atletico Madrid from Chelsea.”

Ter Stegen has a contract with Gladbach until June 2015, while Courtois’ Chelsea deal runs until the summer of 2016.

Dortmund prepare for Lewandowski exit with Son move

The German giants are on the verge of completing an €11.8m deal to sign the Hamburg star ahead as replacement for the Pole

By Greg Stobart

Borussia Dortmund are preparing for the exit of Robert Lewandowski with a move for Hamburg striker Son Heung-Min.

The Champions League finalists are set to beat Tottenham and Arsenal to the South Korean’s signature in the summer transfer window as they prepare for their in-demand forward’s anticipated departure.

Bayern Munich are favourites to sign Lewandowski, who has just one year remaining on his Dortmund contract, but United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has not given up hope of landing the Polish striker.

Dortmund are already losing attacker Mario Gotze to Bayern after the Bundesliga champions triggered the €37 million release clause in his contract.

And Jurgen Klopp is making plans to keep his side competitive next season, with a deal for Son worth around €11.7m understood to be at an advanced stage, while the club have made an enquiry to Manchester City over Edin Dzeko.

Spurs and Arsenal had both expressed strong interest in Son, who has scored 11 goals for Hamburg this season, but the South Korean is keen to stay in Germany.

A move to Dortmund for the 20-year-old is described as “almost done” as they look to soften the blow of Gotze’s departure bring in a potential replacement for Lewandowski at Signal Iduna Park.

Son, a tall and physical leader of the line, is considered a similar style of player to Lewandowski, the top scorer in the Bundesliga this term.

The 24-year-old has netted 35 goals this season, including four goals in the first leg of BVB’s Champions League semi-final victory over Real Madrid, and has become one of the hottest properties in Europe, with speculation rife that he has already agreed to join Bayern despite United’s continued interest.

Sir Alex had suggested that the Premier League champions could be in pole position to land Lewandowski as Dortmund will be reluctant to lose another player to rivals Bayern, whom they face in the Champions League final at Wembley later in May.

“If the right player comes along you have to be prepared to make a move,” the Scot said. “I can find room for anybody here as long as they have the required quality. I am not sure Lewandowski will be sold to Bayern now.

“The Dortmund fans are not going to be happy and I don’t think they will sell to their main rivals. I think they will either let his contract run out, or sell him somewhere else.”

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Ancelotti: It would be hard to reject Real Madrid

The 53-year-old is happy at Paris Saint-Germain but could be tempted to make the move to the Santiago Bernabeu side if the opportunity arises

Carlo Ancelotti has admitted that it would be hard to turn down Real Madrid if the Spanish giants were to approach him this summer, but added that he is happy with life at Paris Saint-Germain.

The Italian coach has been touted as a possible replacement for Jose Mourinho, who is set to leave Madrid for Chelsea at the end of the season, and the 53-year-old has revealed that he was already close to the Blancos job once before.

“It would be pretty hard to reject Madrid,” Ancelotti told Sky.

“I do not know whether my future lies at Real Madrid. There was a moment in the past when I was close to Madrid, but I eventually joined Chelsea instead.

“Nobody knows what will happen in the future, but I am happy at PSG and could stay here for a long time. I am enjoying life in Paris. I want to win Ligue 1 and celebrate the title.”

Ancelotti joined PSG in December 2011 and guided them to the quarter-finals of the Champions League this term, while they are on the verge of wrapping up their first Ligue 1 title since 1994.

Liverpool captain Gerrard expects Suarez to stay at Anfield next season

The England skipper believes the Uruguayan will be “desperate to atone” for the 10-match ban handed to him for biting Branislav Ivanovic, and does not think he will leave the club

Steven Gerrard says he expects his Liverpool team-mate Luis Suarez to stay at the club this summer, and that the Uruguayan will want to make up for his 10-match ban next season.

The 26-year-old is currently serving his suspension for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in April and will not return to first-team action for the Reds until late September at the earliest.

Goal.com revealed that that Liverpool would be willing to offload the striker if they received a bid around the €47 million mark from a foreign club, but Gerrard believes he will stay put and come back stronger.

“I don’t think that what’s happened to Luis will affect him much in terms of his future,” Gerrard told the Liverpool Daily Post.

“Maybe one day we will have to accept that Luis wants to move on, and that will be his decision.

“But I don’t see any signs of it at the moment. Luis has been really happy here at Liverpool and he seems settled here.

“I don’t see him wanting to leave right now.”

Gerrard also says that Suarez accepting his ban was the correct decision, and that the striker will want to atone for his mistakes next season.

“Luis has done the right thing by apologising and taking his medicine,” Gerrard added.

“He’s really unhappy he can’t help the team, and he was really down when the ban came through. But once he is back from his ban we will be the ones that benefit.

“Luis will want to make it up to the club and the team that he has been out for so long. He will be desperate to atone for that.”