Liverpool plot move for Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen
Liverpool, 13/2 with Coral for top four finish, are plotting a move for Barcelona’s German shot-stopper Marc-Andre ter Stegen in a bid to overcome recent goalkeeping problems at Anfield.
Reds boss Brendan Rodgers is keen to tie up a deal for the Spanish league stopper, with current first-team goalkeepers Simon Mignolet and Brad Jones faltering for the Merseyside men.
The Spanish giants signed Ter Stegen from Borussia Monchengladbach for £9.7m last summer but the former Bundesliga player has failed to secure a slot in Barcelona’s starting line-up, with Claudio Bravo becoming number one instead.
Barcelona have come under the spotlight this season due to the club’s recent departures, with Andoni Zubizarreta leaving his post as director of football and Carles Puyol leaving as his assistant. Ter Stegen could soon follow suit, with Argentina captain Lionel Messi also rumoured to be unhappy.
Capped four times for Germany, the 22-year-old keeper has reportedly become Rodgers’ most desired option to replace struggling Mignolet as Anfield’s first-choice stopper, with over three weeks of the January transfer market still left for a deal to be struck.
Rodgers’ Reds have the joint worst defensive record in the Premier League’s current top eight teams, having conceded 27 goals so far this season in 20 outings. Mignolet has been between the sticks for 22 of those leaked strikes, and Liverpool’s stuttering stopper has come under severe scrutiny in recent weeks.
Ter Stegen, who recently revealed his frustration at a lack of opportunities at the Nou Camp, could provide Liverpool with a more secure protection behind the back-line.
“It’s good to be at Barcelona but the situation is difficult. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t care and it isn’t easy being a spectator,” said Ter Stegen.
A deal looks positive for both parties with the Reds aiming to strengthen their defensive unit for the remainder of this season’s Premier League, while Ter Stegen wants regular first-team football, having to be content with playing just cup competitions so far this term.
Liverpool will be hoping to climb the domestic league table in a hunt for European places, having dropped to eighth position, but have shown a glimpse of rejuvenated form going unbeaten in their previous four league games. The Anfield outfit are odds-on 4/6 to secure a spot in the top six this season.