Italian giants and present European champions Inter Milan have placed a £20 million bid for Liverpool's want-away midfielder Javier Mascherano.
The club's sporting director Marco Branca announced that the San Siro Giants have placed an offer to Liverpool for their distraught midfielder and are awaiting response from the Merseysiders. Inter Milan were previously the favorites to land the highly-regarded Argentine but they did not show much interest in recent weeks.
La Liga champions Barcelona entered the race and were being seen as the favorites to land Masch even though their bid of £12 million was rejected earlier this week. But with Inter's bid, the Catalans will have to up their bid by another £8 million if they are to land the 26-year-old Argentina captain.
Marco Branca further told that Internazionale have not yet held talks with the player as they want to complete the deal by keeping both the parties happy. Liverpool had previously placed a £18 million price tag on their rebellious midfielder. So Inter's bid is well above that mark and unless Barca places a more improved offer Inter Milan are the favourites to land Masch.
The Argentine's Anfield days are numbered after he refused to take the field during Liverpool's 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Manchester City earlier this week. This was allegedly an attempt by him to force a transfer and it looks that he is likely to get one really soon.
Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson has kept him out of the squad for Liverpool's Europa League clash against Trabzonspor as he does not wish any possible transfer move that the player makes in next few days.
Mascherano would prefer a move to Inter as he would like to be reunited with his old manager Rafa Benitez, with whom he shared a good relation. If Barca does not up their bid it is almost fixed that the Argentine will be donning Inter colours by next week.