Willian has drawn interest from a host of English clubs, after being out up for sale. The Russian club owner Suleiman Kerimov has transfer listed most of the big name players as the club has entered into a financial turmoil following Kerimov’s withdrawal of funding for Anzhi.
The 25-year-old Brazilian was close to joining Tottenham before completing his move from Shakhtar Donetsk to Anzhi during the winter transfer window last season. Back then Spurs were willing to offer a club record fee of £35m for winger before talks broke down and the move failed to materialize. It is understood that the London club are once again ready to reignite their interest in Willian as Andre Villas Boas has been a long term admirer of the Brazilian and sees him as an significant addition to the squad who could propel Spurs as title contenders in the league. Moreover, with the uncertain future of Gareth Bale, Willian could be the long term successor of Bale at the club.
But Tottenham will face competition from both Manchester United and Liverpool in their pursuit of the Brazilian hotshot. In fact reports suggest that the Merseyside club are the favorites to land the Anzhi star at the moment. Liverpool are preparing a £30m bid for Willian, but the Brazilian’s high wage might be the only stumbling block in attaining his service.
Willian however has left little for imagination as he has publicly disclosed his desire to join Liverpool. The Brazilian has also revealed that a Manchester City bid has been turned down by the club and about his dream of playing in the English Premier League.
“Kerimov told us that Anzhi won’t make further investments…Russian players will join and foreign players would be free to go,
“He made it clear that if good bids arrive, close to what he paid for the players, that he would certainly help us go.
“There was the Manchester City bid that was turned down. Now I’m waiting for a new bid to arrive in the next days from a few clubs, like Liverpool.
“If it’s really Liverpool, then it is surely a great club. I’m hopeful and very calm, just waiting for the best.
“England is my goal. I like the Premier League very much, I enjoy English football and certainly, if that happens, it will be very good for me and for my image.
“I know there have been some talks, but I don’t know the values, the agent didn’t tell me, he just said there were talks with some clubs, he didn’t name them, but I think they are English.” – The Liverpool target was quoted in press.
Despite his come and get me plea for Liverpool, reports suggest that Manchester United are preparing a bid of their own for the want away winger. United have so far failed to land any of their high profile transfer targets but David Moyes is still keen on adding a central midfielder and an attacking midfielder to the squad before the transfer window closes, and Willian’s versatility to play both as a winger and as a central attacking midfielder can be huge asset for any squad.
Willian burst into the scenes after winning the 2007 South American Youth Championship with U-20 national team. Later that year he completed his big money move from Brazilian side Corinthians to Shakhtar Donetsk. But despite shining for the Ukrainian team, he has often been ignored by his national side. Willian has made only two appearances for Brazil since making his debut back in November 2011 in a friendly against Gabon. Securing a move to a Premier League team will certainly help his international career. Last season, he put in some brilliant displays with Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League where he scored four goals and provided two assists during the Group stages. He could be make a big impact on his arrival in the Premier League.
Considering Liverpool are the favourites to land him, it will be interesting to see if this big money move for him is an indication that Luis Suarez will finally leave the club, although the Merseyside club remain adamant of not selling him to a Premier League rival. If Liverpool can indeed hold on to Suarez and add Willian, they will be the favourites to break into the top four next season.