Rumour Mill: Mascherano latest

The rumour mill rumbles on this weekend with several papers this morning reporting that Barcelona are launching big money bids to tempt Liverpool midfielder Javier Mascherano away from Anfield.

Depending on which report you read, Mascherano is unhappy on Merseyside because of falling out with Rafa Benitez at the end of last season, or because he and his wife are disillusioned with the English lifestyle.

Either way, there is a general consensus that the European Champions are preparing a bid of around £35million for the Agentine international captain.

And Barcelona midfielder Sergi Busquets says he would welcome Mascherano at the Nou Camp to give him more competition for the defensive midfield position at the Catalan club.

He told Spanish sports journal El Mundo Deportivo, “No, the more players that come the better, and they will be welcomed.

“He is a magnificent player and hopefully he can be added. The most important thing is that the signings will add to the squad.”

Today’s Daily Mail reads:

Liverpool’s title plans have been thrown into disarray by a stand off between Javier Mascherano and manager Rafa Benitez. The pair fell out at the end of last season after Benitez rotated the team, leaving Mascherano out of some crucial matches.

Meanwhile the Reds have been linked with a move for River Plate’s Columbian international, Radamel Falcao.

He told press, ‘œI know about the interest of several teams so this match against Estudiantes could be my last one at River.’

And Swiss international Gokhan Inler has been rumoured to be lined up as a replacement by Rafa Benitez should Xabi Alonso or Mascherano leave the club this summer.

Inler could however cost around £18million with his Italian club Udinese valuing him highly.

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