Parry denies Pennant bid

Liverpool Chief Executive Rick Parry says the club haven’t made a bid for Birmingham’s right-winger Jermaine Pennant.

When asked if Liverpool had been in touch with Birmingham over the player, Rick replied: “We have not made a bid for Jermaine Pennant.”

This quote is from the Liverpool Echo, often seen as the club’s unofficial outlet for stories they’d like to be leaked, but the regular Liverpool FC journalist, Chris Bascombe, is on holiday at the moment. The stand-in, usually a reporter on Everton issues, may not be aware of strong indications that Liverpool have made a bid previously for Jermaine, certainly they’ve been in touch Birmingham about him and as things stand aren’t willing to make a bid of the possible £7m asking price Birmingham seem to be seeking. Pennant is also believed to have already spoken to Liverpool, with permission, before the end of last season about the idea of a move to Anfield.

Daniel Alves remains Rafa’s first-choice signing, but if he finally concedes defeat in that attempt then Pennant will be of interest. Just perhaps not at such a price.

Reports yesterday in the Spanish media claimed Liverpool were lining up a move to sign a 16-year-old starlet from Barcelona – midfielder Fran Merida. Merida had been believed to be in Liverpool’s sights and, like other youngsters, unable to actually sign for Liverpool until he turns 17. Merida didn’t turn up to training at Barca, saying his absence was for “personal reasons”. Also mentioned in the reports was another teenager from Spain – Real Madrid’s Esteban Granero. Again speaking to the Echo, Parry said of the two youngster: “We are aware of both players.”  Asked about the reports Liverpool already had the pair lined up for a move to Anfield, Parry said this was “wide of the mark.”

Meanwhile the new owner of the Liverpool number 11 shirt, taking over from Robbie Fowler, is looking forward to finally playing on an English pitch. Mark Gonzalez will be included in tomorrow’s friendly at Crewe Alexandra. He’s hoping he doesn’t need time to settle into the English game: “I hope I can make an impact in English football straightaway and I hope that all my homework stands me in good stead,” said Gonzalez, who watched lots of Liverpool’s matches on television last season. If it takes me a little while to find my feet then I would think that is only normal.”