Liverpool admitted for the first time they will sell Luis Suarez, after the player told them he wants to talk to Arsenal.
However, Anfield boss Brendan Rodgers has put a £50million price on the head of his Uruguay striker.
Arsenal triggered a clause in Suarez’s contract with a stunning £40,000,0001 bid this week, although Liverpool rejected the offer and their American owner John W Henry tweeted: ‘I don’t know what they are smoking at the Emirates.’
But the first signs Arsenal’s strategy is working came when Suarez was told he can to speak to the Gunners as Liverpool finally admitted they are prepared to sell him.
Arsenal are ready to raise their bid slightly plus add-ons and bonuses but they are unlikely to go to £50m.
Suarez played in Liverpool’s pre-season friendly in Australia yesterday, but showed no emotion as he was congratulated after setting up Liverpool’s second goal.
The decisive factor will be Suarez’s next move – and he meets Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers today Down Under.
Liverpool are adamant the £40m clause does not mean they have to sell but Suarez’s camp see it as a get-out.
Arsenal’s biggest concern is Real Madrid making a late bid, and they are set to receive a £30million boost to their transfer kitty after agreeing to sell Gonzalo Higuain to Napoli for £30m.
Arsenal will put a five year, £150,000-a-week contract on the table to tempt Suarez.