EPL Transfer Rumour: Liverpool interested in signing Barcelona's Thomas Vermaelen
Barcelona manager Luis Enrique is willing to sanction sale of Thomas Vermaelen.
Thomas Vermaelen was wanted by Manchester United in the summer of 2014 when he was still the player under the books of Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger once sold his player, Robin van Persie to the Red Devils and decided the Dutch international will be the last player to leave the Emirates for Old Trafford. The Frenchman made sure the 30-year-old will not be sold to the north London club's direct rival and thus he joined Barcelona.
At Camp Nou, the central defender has struggled with injuries, fitness and form, which has seen his first team appearances being limited. The situation has alerted clubs in England who are interested in bringing him back to the Premier League. It does look like United dodged a bullet in regards to Vermaelen.
According to Spanish publication Sport (via The Mirror), Liverpool and West Ham United are looking to the option of signing the Belgium international in the summer transfer window. They have been made aware that the La Liga giants are willing to do business.
Barcelona manager Luis Enrique already sanctioned the sale of Marc Bartra as the centre-back completed his switch to Borussia Dortmund last week. The manager of the Catalan club will allow Vermaelen to leave his current employers, despite the situation leaving the team with few quality central defenders.
Jurgen Klopp has Dejan Lovren, Mamadou Sakho, Kolo Toure and Martin Skrtel as his first choice central defenders at Anfield. The former Arsenal and Manchester City man's contract at the Merseyside club will expire at the end of this month.
Fresh doubts about Martin Skrtel’s future
Meanwhile, Skrtel's future remains uncertain as he is attracting interest from Turkey. The former Dortmund manager has already signed Joel Matip on a free transfer from Schalke. Should Toure and Skrtel leave, this will force him to enter the market in signing another centre-back.
Vermaelen has emerged as one of the options in that position, but the former Premier League defender's age could be an issue, should Klopp make an approach for him. Also, they will face competition from West Ham.
Slaven Bilic is looking to bolster the squad for the next season and Vermaelen prefers West Ham over Liverpool. Although the Hammers have not opened any talks with Barcelona in their efforts to sign the ex-Gunners player.
Vermaelen's future could go on for a while as he is with Belgium squad for the Euro 2016, which will start on 10 June.