Milan Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of August 4
The same characters are in play. It's Mario Balotelli, Robinho and Alessio Cerci.
Balotelli was recently linked with Liverpool, as per Italian outlet Sport Mediaset (via Football Italia), Robinho to Dubai, as per Italian paper Tuttosport (via Football Italia) and Cerci—well, he's still staying put.
But there's someone new in the mix. Pepe Reina is the 31-year-old goalkeeper that AC Milan want.
Reina still has a two-year contract with Liverpool, but according to reports in Italy (h/t Bruce Archer of the Daily Star), Reina could try to terminate his deal with the Merseyside club and opt for Serie A once again. Reina had a good season on loan at Napoli in 2013-14, and he was the first to save a professional penalty kick from Balotelli.
But like many other players, it is his wages—demands at around £100,000 a week—that "put off" the Rossoneri, as per Jack De Menezes of The Independent.
Here's a look at the transfers that probably won't happen for Milan.
Liverpool Not Interested in Balotelli
The price for Balotelli keeps on dropping.
The latest figure, reported by Sport Mediaset (h/t Football Italia), was £14.3 million.
Earlier in the week, Rodgers praised the "talent he is and excellent player he is." But he reinforced his opinion of Balotelli, saying: "I can categorically tell you that he will not be coming to Liverpool," to Mark Ogden of the Daily Telegraph. "He is a wonderful player, but he is an AC Milan player. I just gave my opinion of him, but doesn’t mean I will be signing him."
The likelihood of Balotelli leaving is low, unless Milan do the uncharacteristic thing and sell at a low price. Regardless, the market for Balotelli keeps on shrinking.
A Solution for Robinho
He was supposed to go back to Santos. Vice-president Odilio Rodrigues told Globo Esporte (h/t Vaishali Bhardwaj of Goal.com) that "it is difficult for us to meet his financial demands."
And there were offers from Greece for Robinho, Galliani said, according to Sky Italia (via Sambafoot.com).
Italian paper Tuttosport claims there is another suitor. Dubai club Al Ahli are "offering a salary of €4.5 million a season, plus bonuses," as per Football Italia. Robinho would make more there than he does at Milan. It is an offer that could finally break the stalemate.
Coach Inzaghi is due to meet with Galliani to discuss Robinho, among other targets, when Milan return home from their North American tour on Friday.
Cerci Staying Put for Now
Milan do not look like a club that would give an "indisputable offer" for the 27-year-old Cerci.
But that is a requirement for Torino coach Giampiero Ventura.
"He is back from a fantastic season and it is normal that he can aspire to be at a top club,” Ventura told Tuttomercatoweb.com (h/t Football Italia). “Torino are a great team, but if he were to receive an indisputable offer from a club that plays in the Champions League, then it would be hard to say no."
Well, that rules out Milan then.
Football Italia also relays reports that Torino rejected Milan's latest proposal and could even offer him a five-year contract extension worth €1.5 million a season.
And Reina Is Too Expensive
Backup goalkeeper Gabriel injured Mattia De Sciglio in a pre-season game against Liverpool, and it wasn't the first time. He once punched Antonio Cassano in the head.
It's nerve-wracking. Milan do not have a clear-cut starter in goal. Michael Agazzi was poor in the pre-season games as well, and Christian Abbiati, while capable of producing spectacular saves, is still 37.
In comes Reina—or not.
Reina has wages worth £100,000 a week. That is a problem for a cost-wary club like Milan.
Reina brings a little more than capable hands.