By Greg Stobart
Liverpool are set to ramp up their efforts to sign Inter star Wesley Sneijder as the Dutch playmaker continues to stall on a transfer to Galatasaray, Goal.com understands.
The midfielder has been holding out for a transfer to the Premier League and Liverpool are now trying to put together a financial package after stepping up their pursuit of the 28-year-old.
Inter agreed a €10 million [£8.3m] fee with Galatasaray a week previously but Sneijder has delayed a decision on signing for the Turkish club as he waits for offers from English sides.
“A number of meetings are scheduled in the next 24 hours but there is serious interest from Liverpool and Wesley would like to see if they follow that through,” a source close to the deal told Goal.com. “This is a big decision at this moment in his career from a football and personal perspective.”
The Reds held talks with Sneijder’s representatives on Monday, which have been described as “constructive”, as they look to make use of the wages freed up by the departures of high-earners Joe Cole and Nuri Sahin in January.
WESLEY SNEIJDER | ALL-TIME INTER STATS
Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester United, Manchester City and Chelsea have all been sounded out over moves for Sneijder during the winter window by third parties but rejected a deal due to the player’s £200,000-a-week wages.
The Nerazzurri star currently earns £9m a year at the San Siro and is considering a £1.6m annual pay cut to join Galatasaray as Inter try and force their unsettled midfielder out of the club.
While Liverpool’s offer is likely to fall well below that of Galatasaray, Sneijder is eager to test himself in the Premier League and has made it clear to his agent that he would favour a switch to Anfield.
The Turkish giants and Inter are, however, pushing the player for a final answer, with the former Real Madrid and Ajax man unhappy at the way that he feels treated by Massimo Moratti, the Italian club’s president.
“All players on the move in this transfer window must decide what to do and where to go by the end of January. I’ll do the same,” Sneijder told Gazzetta dello Sport.
“I am in no hurry and I don’t want to rush this decision. After what has happened in the last few months, in the context of having made football history with my team-mates, well, I don’t want to feel pressured,” he added.
“After what I did, I don’t want to feel this way – practically obliged to make such an important step in my life in a short space of time. It’s not a money matter.”
Sneijder played a vital role in guiding Inter to an historic treble in 2010 under Jose Mourinho but has fallen out of favour under current coach Andrea Stramaccioni, making just five Serie A appearances this season before being frozen out of the squad.
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