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Liverpool: Manchester United target midfielder; ex-manager after Flanagan; French defender linked

Liverpool

Liverpool: Manchester United target midfielder; ex-manager after Flanagan; French defender linked

No player has moved from Liverpool to Manchester United since 1938, but new Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho is reportedly looking to change that by making a bid for Wales midfielder Joe Allen.

Allen, who was named in the UEFA team of the tournament thanks to his exemplary performances at the European Championships, has been surprisingly linked with a £20 million move to Old Trafford as Jose Mourinho looks to reshape his midfield. West Ham United and Allen’s former club Swansea City are also interested in signing the Welshman, with the latter already having an £8 million turned down by Liverpool before the Euros.

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A move to Manchester United is incredibly unlikely, even for a player who looks as if he is on his way out of the door like Allen. His performances towards the end of the season for Liverpool and at the Euros, though, mean that Allen’s value has increased dramatically, and losing him to their biggest rivals would be a big blow to the club.

If Swansea or West Ham come in with a big offer, then it could be wise to sell Allen, but his improvement has been so marked over the last few months that holding onto the midfielder might be the right option. Selling to Manchester United would send out all of the wrong messages and almost certainly won’t happen, but with just one year left on his contract, cashing in looks the likely option on Allen.

In other potential departure news, defender Jon Flanagan has been linked with a loan move to Celtic to join up with former Reds boss Brendan Rodgers. However, Liverpool are not looking to loan out the 23-year-old, and are not overly keen to sell, meaning the transfer is very much a long shot.

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Flannagan, who played on the left-side of Rodgers’ Liverpool defence in the 2013/14 season, has suffered with terrble injury problems over the last two seasons, and doesn’t appear to be part of Jurgen Klopp’s first team plans. He is endeared to the Kop thanks to being from the city and being a wholly committed presence on the pitch, so a sale would not go down to well with the fans, whether or not Flanagan plays a lot or not.

Finally, in light of Martin Skrtel’s inevitable exit to Fenerbahce, the Reds may be in the market for a new centre back. Joel Matip has already arrived on a free transfer from Schalke, joining Dejan Lovren and Mamadou Sakho in the squad, but Kolo Toure’s release and Joe Gomez’s latest injury set back has meant that another option may be needed at the back.

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The latest name linked with a move to Liverpool is Barcelona and France defender Jeremy Mathieu. The 32-year-old is also a target for Besiktas, and Barcelona are likely to sell the player after they captured Samuel Umtiti from Lyon.

Mathieu would represent a good back up option for Liverpool. He is an experienced player from his time at Valencia and the Nou Camp, and would be a calm and assured option in defence. Coming towards the end of his career, he is unlikely to usurp Matip, Sakho and Lovren in the side, but, much like when Kolo Toure arrived in 2013, his experience from the bench and in the dressing room could prove very useful. It could be a very shrewd signing.

Featured Image: All rights reserved by Tricia H. Kuhn

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