Chelsea ready to pay £31m for Gerrard

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The Independent Football

Chelsea are ready to pay £31m up front for the Liverpool captain and England star Steven Gerrard. Owner Roman Abramovich wants the midfielder to be his notable signing before the new season and now he plans to use his vast wealth to get his man.

Chelsea are ready to pay £31m up front for the Liverpool captain and England star Steven Gerrard. Owner Roman Abramovich wants the midfielder to be his notable signing before the new season and now he plans to use his vast wealth to get his man.

Abramovich is prepared to pay a huge fee and give Liverpool the money without staggering payments or including instalments. Most fees are paid over the length of a contract.

Financially this would be worth more to Liverpool because of the interest the £31m could be worth over the course of five years. The cash would be some consolation for Liverpool if they lose their home-grown captain and inspiration, and the funds are needed for rebuilding the team at Anfield.

Liverpool have been talking to Thailand investors and local millionaire Steve Morgan about ways of raising funds, but Chelsea's offer would present an instant solution.

Gerrard knows of Chelsea's interest and may be tempted by the size of his personal salary, around £6m a year. Chelsea are looking for a big signing after reportedly failing with bids for Ronaldinho, David Beckham and Roberto Carlos.

Gerrard signed a new three-year deal in November last year and it is generally believed that Liverpool's search for a new manager was, in part, motivated by a desire to meet the ambitions of their top players such as Gerrard and Michael Owen .

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