Athletic Bilbao warn Liverpool off Amorebieta

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The Independent Football

Athletic Bilbao have issued a hands-off warning to any interested parties in Fernando Mardaras Amorebieta, after press reports linked the defender with a move to Liverpool.

The 24-year-old has been reported as a target for Rafael Benitez as he looks to bolster his weakened rearguard, but the La Liga side have maintained that he is not for sale.

Bilbao president Fernando Macua maintained that there had been no offers for the player.

"This player is not for sale and we have received no contact from Liverpool," he said.

"At this moment he is a key member of our squad and we have no interest in letting him go."

The Venezuelan has a £26m release clause in his contract, though Liverpool are unlikely to be willing to pay half that figure to secure his signature.