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Balague clarifies Alonso situation by lfctalk
June 2, 2009, 17:01
Filed under: Transfer Gossip | Tags: ,

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Guillem Balague has moved quickly to clarify comments he made on his website, http://www.guillembalague.com, earlier this week regarding the future of Xabi Alonso.

The Spanish pundit claimed that a move to Real Madrid could be wrapped up quickly for the midfielder, but he has cleared up what he meant with this statement:

“Following an article I published on the site yesterday, related to Florentino Perez` summer transfer plans at Real Madrid, I sense there are a few areas that may need clarifying when it comes to Xabi Alonso`s situation at Liverpool.” he opened.

“The future of Xabi Alonso is all over the back pages again today and this story seems to be changing by the day – it is no surprise: with the new president of Real Madrid aiming to get his summer spending spree underway as quickly as possible and with Xabi Alonso high on his list of priorities that the situation is so fluid.”

“I have been under the impression that, if a deal is struck, then things will move very quickly. After all, that would suit all parties concerned: Liverpool needs the money early to allow them to go on and sign other players; Xabi will be looking for a new challenge after 5 years at the club and will have his situation sorted early on in the summer; Real will get the midfielder they want and can move on to other targets. And now that it is out in the open that Gareth Barry is in talks with Manchester City, it made sense that Liverpool would want to know where they stand as quickly as possible to avoid missing out on someone who we know was a target.”

“However, the situation is becoming complicated – which is why I stressed yesterday that there is much work to be done and things will be resolved swiftly only if and when a deal is agreed.”

“Partly because of how unpopular the transfer would be in Liverpool, it is all getting very political. I suspect that before Liverpool will let Xabi go, the club wants him to come out and publicly express a desire to move.”

“You`ve all been emailing me telling me that you don`t want Xabi to leave and asking why would Rafa want to sell him – but it`s a very different story if Xabi says he wants to go isn`t it – and even the most ardent Liverpool fan might accept that, after 5 years excellent service to the club and life in England – Xabi could be tempted by an opportunity to return home and play for the biggest club in his native country. Xabi is certainly not being driven out of the club as some emails and on site comments seem to suggest.”

“There is a second condition for the transfer to take place. Real Madrid will have to place a huge €40 – €50 million offer on the table in a very high profile way: but that`s highly unlikely and we are far more likely to see a game of cat and mouse as Real Madrid try and negotiate the best possible deal for themselves; it has been reported that the Madrid offer could be a player plus cash deal; but no contact has taken place and Liverpool don`t want either of the players mentioned, Negredo or Heinze, at this stage.”

“So perhaps, if the parties involved had played this transfer in a different way, it may have taken place already. But now nobody can predict what might happen.”

“I believe that if Xabi Alonso is sold it will be for cash: as Rafa Benitez will want as much money as possible to bolster his transfer kitty, enabling him to sign the players that he has identified as a priority – and not just those who are offered on a plate.”

“Which bring us onto another topic that we have been getting lots if emails about: criticisms of Rafa`s potential targets should Alonso be sold. I will say this – have faith in the manager and trust his judgment. Remember the criticism when Liverpool signed the unknown Skrtel? And how many people complained that Benitez didn`t need Agger because he already had Hyppia.”

“I think we just need to look at Rafa`s reaction to questions about Xabi`s future to know that, if Real Madrid want to sign Alonso, it is going to take an awful lot of money and a great deal of persuasion – and a plea from the player as well. Madrid will be working hard from now on to try and get things moving quickly – which may still happen – but we may find that no agreement is reached: in which case, Xabi stays. And if he does, well look at what happened with Gerrard a couple of years ago: it looked as if he might be going…and look at him now.”

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