Friday, August 13, 2010

Hodgson wants Mascherano to stay

Javier Mascherano
Mascherano has long been linked with a summer move to Inter Milan

Liverpool boss Roy Hodgson says he has not signed Christian Poulsen to replace unsettled midfielder Javier Mascherano, adding that the Argentine may yet stay.

Mascherano, 26, said in July he wanted to leave Anfield, with Inter Milan and Barcelona reportedly interested.

Hodgson signed Poulsen from Juventus on Thursday, but the Reds manager says no club has made an offer for Mascherano.

"I don't want to let Javier go," said Hodgson. "It is not a question of Christian replacing Javier at all."

He added: "I believe Javier is going to play for us. We didn't take Christian to replace anyone, we took him in because we wanted to improve the size and quality of our squad.


"I am happy to have both players; we are going to have a lot of games to play this year, and we are going to need a lot of players."

After returning from the World Cup, Mascherano told new boss Hodgson he was looking to leave the club, with a reunion with ex-Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez, now at Inter, said to be his favoured choice.

But Hodgson says he has not received any bids for the former West Ham man and until he does, Mascherano will be as much a part of his plans as any player at the club.

"As far as Javier is concerned, I can quite categorically state there has been no offer from any club for him," said the former Fulham boss. "As a result I don't see why every day I should put his loyalty or desire in doubt.

"We made it clear to him that if the offer he wanted came along we probably would not stand in his way but that offer has not come along and he is working hard to play for Liverpool.

"He is a realistic player. He is playing for Liverpool and is not looking for a move to a Spanish second division team - there are very few clubs in the world that can even consider having Javier Mascherano on their books.

"If he wants to leave he will be expecting a club of a similar stature to Liverpool to come along, and at the moment they haven't so I'm presuming he is very happy to stay here."

Inter are rumoured to still be interested in Mascherano, however, and the potential sale of striker Mario Balotelli to Manchester City for about £24m could raise the funds needed to purchase the midfielder.

Mascherano, who has two years to run on a four-year contract, has made 138 appearances for Liverpool since arriving from West Ham United in 2007.

Potenshöjande medel - köp cialis receptfritt

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