Raheem Sterling has told Brendan Rodgers he wishes to leave Anfield and that he does not want to be considered for Liverpool’s pre-season tour of South East Asia and Australia.
Sterling has held two meetings with Rodgers since returning to Melwood for training on Monday morning.
It is understood that in the second, he informed the Liverpool manager of his intentions, although the winger has not yet lodged an official transfer request.
Manchester City have not made contact with Liverpool since their second offer two weeks ago but are aware of the development and preparing to make a third bid for Sterling in the coming days.
City are unwilling to meet Sterling’s £50 million price tag, but will go close to matching Liverpool’s demands in an effort to force a compromise.
It remains to be seen whether Sterling will board the flight to Bangkok for the first leg of Liverpool’s tour on Sunday morning.
Liverpool are due to face a Thai All-Star XI on Tuesday and if he is made to travel, he will find himself in a similar position to Luis Suarez two summers ago when the Uruguayan made it clear that he wanted to go to Arsenal only to appear for the Reds in a friendly victory over Melbourne Victory.
In the meantime, Liverpool are considering whether to make a move for Barcelona’s Pedro Rodríguez. Rodgers is aware that Liverpool will be without a natural wide-player in attacking areas if Sterling leaves and is already weighing up alternatives.
It has also possible that Rodgers sounded out Sterling about Pedro in an attempt to convince the 20-year-old that Liverpool are in the market for big-name players.
Meanwhile, Javier Manquillo’s return to Atlético Madrid has been confirmed. The Spanish right back was in the middle of a two-year loan but Nathaniel Clyne’s arrival on Merseyside has led to a swift exit.
Manchester United were last night seeking to end their frustrating summer search for a right-back by moving for Torino’s Italy international defender Matteo Darmain for a fee of £12m.
The 25-year-old may be in Manchester as early as next week to wrap up a deal, equipping the Old Trafford club with a player who was a product of Milan’s youth system and impressed for Cesare Prandelli’s Italy side at last summer’s World Cup.
With manager Louis van Gaal harbouring doubts about Rafael da Silva’s suitability, United were thwarted in their attempts to strengthen in the position earlier this summer when Barcelona’s Dani Alves decided to stay at the Nou Camp.
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