Liverpool manager Rafael Benitez looks set to bring another of his former Valencia players to Anfield this summer. The Brazilian left-back Fabio Aurelio is a free agent in the summer, and so is in a position to sign a pre-contract agreement now in preparation for a move to another club at the end of the season.
The player has already confirmed he’s spoken to the Reds, and now Liverpool look favourites to get his signature, ahead of Olympiakos and Manchester United. Reports claim the 26-year-old will be offered £25,000 per week.
Liverpool have relied for much of the season on the services of John Arne Riise at left-back, with Stephen Warnock just back in the side again after Riise suffered an injury. The signing of Aurelio would possibly signal the end of the career at Anfield of either Warnock or Djimi Traore. Aurelio is described by some as a wing-back and perhaps Rafa sees him combining well with Chilean left-winger Mark Gonzalez, another player set to play at Anfield next season. In fact Aurelio would be the third South American to arrive at the club in the summer, with defender Gabriel Paletta also due to become a Red. Rafa signed another of his former Valencia players last summer when he snatched Momo Sissoko from under the noses of Everton.
Aurelio had been in talks with Valencia about a new deal but he didn’t seem confident about staying there when he was asked about it last month: “There is no news – from what I know there have been no new conversations. My future is with Valencia until the month of July and then we will see what happens. Nothing is impossible, but it is complicated by many factors. The most important thing is the good form of the team and at the end of the season we could all be even more happy than we are now.”
As ever, agents are involved in sorting things out, and it looks like Aurelio’s has found him a deal at Anfield: “It’s in the hands of my agent, I have total faith in him and he will do the best thing for me for next season – I am concentrating on my football.”
If he signs, he will be the first Brazilian ever to play for the Liverpool, although older Reds will remember Zico.