Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers was non-committal yesterday on the future of Andy Carroll, as his club closed in on adding Roma's Fabio Borini to the Anfield strike force.
Rodgers worked with Borini when he was a coach at Chelsea's academy and was impressed enough to bring the Italian in on loan from Stamford Bridge to Swansea in March 2011, when the 21 year-old scored six goals in just nine appearances and helped get City promoted.
Borini has one Italy cap but was an unused squad member at the recent European Championship. There was confusion about his intentions two weeks ago, when Roma bought out the remaining 50 per cent of his contract, having taken him on loan from their Serie A rivals Parma. However, the deal did not materially affect Rodgers' chances of persuading the striker to become his first Liverpool signing. In fact, it has simplified it, by ensuring they have only one club to deal with for a possible £7m acquisition.
The prospect of a Milan loan move for Carroll has been floated in Italy, where the club's president, Pier Silvio Berlusconi, son of the former Italian prime minister, has said he was impressed at Euro 2012 with a player whose £35m Liverpool price tag may make his sell-on fee prohibitive.
Rodgers did not reject such an audacious notion when it was put to him that such a deal might not offer benefits for Liverpool. "It's something I would have to look at, I have to be honest," he said. "I'm not going to sit here and say I will never let anyone go on loan, then come in here in two weeks and a player's gone. There are many things to going on loan. Is it going to be beneficial for the club? That's the most important thing."