Rumour Mill: Lavezzi, Johnson, Distin deals off

Liverpool are not interested in signing Napoli’s Argentine striker Ezequiel Lavezzi, despite the player’s agent claiming that the Reds have tabled a large offer to the Italian club.

Eduado Rossetto, who represents Lavezzi, told Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport yesterday, ‘œThere is a definite proposal from Liverpool.’

But Reds boss Rafael Benitez has fumed at the claims and has stepped in quickly to rubbish all rumours linking the 24-year-old striker with a summer move to Anfield.

Benitez said bluntly, “We never contacted Lavezzi and we have no intention of doing so. We want to put a stop to these rumours.”

Meanwhile reports from down South suggest that Liverpool won’t be getting their hands on Portsmouth and England defender Glen Johnson either.

Sports - December 16, 2007

The 24-year-old has been linked with a big money move to the Reds and also Tottenham and his former club Chelsea.

But yesterday Johnson played down any rumours of him leaving Fratton Park, insisting the opportunities he has had since leaving Chelsea two years ago have made him a better player ‘“ and now a regular for his country.

He said, “No-one has spoken to me, nothing has been said. As far as I’m concerned I’m a Portsmouth player and I will continue to be.

“I’ve benefited from playing virtually every game with Pompey. That was one of the main reasons I signed.”

And Aston Villa appear to have entered the race to sign another Portsmouth defender ‘“ Sylvain Distin, who Benitez reportedly wants to replace Sami Hyypia.

Distin, valued at around £2million, has just one year left on his contract at the South Coast club and could be tempted by the offer of more regular first-team football at Villa Park rather than being a squad player at Anfield.

  • Read a comprehensive roud-up of who Liverpool’s transfer targets are this summer here.