Belfast Telegraph

Roberto Martinez set for further Liverpool talks

By Carl Markham

Liverpool's managerial situation may become clearer today as Wigan boss Roberto Martinez is expected to have more talks with Reds owners Fenway Sports Group.

The Spaniard, who met with principal owner John Henry in Miami last week while on holiday in Barbados, is due back off his break.

Latics chairman Dave Whelan has attempted to force the issue by bringing forward a deadline for Martinez to decide upon his future from next Tuesday to Thursday.

Indications at the weekend were that the Wigan boss was mulling over the prospect of having to work under a yet-to-be-appointed sporting director - with Dutchman Louis van Gaal strongly linked - at Anfield.

Swansea yesterday denied they had received a second approach from the Reds for manager Brendan Rodgers despite speculation to the contrary.

Whelan admits he would be happy for the Northern Irishman to be installed at the expense of Martinez and criticised FSG for their handling of the recruitment process.

"If it is true that Liverpool want to speak with Brendan Rodgers it proves they don't know who they want as manager," Whelan told ESPN.

"I hope they choose Brendan Rodgers.

"Roberto has told me he is speaking with Liverpool again on Tuesday.

"I have now made it clear that I want this sorted out by Thursday at the latest as we have to get on preparing for next season."

Doubts remain as to whether Martinez wants to work under a sporting director in a new set-up at Anfield and after reports emerged suggesting FSG were keen to speak to Rodgers, who turned down their initial approach two weeks ago, the Spaniard's position as front-runner appeared to be under threat.

However, Swans chairman Huw Jenkins dismissed those claims as "pure speculation" and the club issued a statement re-iterating their - and Rodgers' - position.

"We would like to clarify the speculation in the press surrounding our manager Brendan Rodgers," it said.

"We would like to confirm that there has been no contact from Liverpool and nothing has changed since our previous statement on the issue."

Belfast Telegraph


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