Liverpool transfers: Christian Benteke worth £32.5m, says Dietmar Hamann
Former Liverpool midfielder Dietmar Hamann says Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke is perfect for the Reds
Dietmar Hamann believes Christian Benteke is worth £32.5m after reports Liverpool have activated the Aston Villa striker’s contract release clause.
The Belgium international is one of the Premier League’s most-coveted strikers following reported interest from Arsenal, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur in recent months.
However, Liverpool are thought to be leading the race to sign the towering striker, who scored 13 goals in 28 Premier League appearances for Villa last season.
Fingers crossed he does sign. There aren’t too many decent ones out there and last season showed how badly Liverpool needed another centre-forward
And former Reds midfielder Hamann believes Benteke is exactly the type of player that Brendan Rodgers needs to add to his squad.
“I think Benteke is worth the money,” Hamann told the ECHO.
“Look at what kind of money is being paid for other attacking players – like the £49million Man City paid for Raheem Sterling.
“I think £32million is probably about right. In fact I would have paid a bit more for him because I think he’s that good.
“I’ve seen him terrorise defences and he gave Liverpool a torrid time at Wembley a few months ago.
“There’s not many players out there who can play up front on their own.
“You have to be able to hold the ball up, score goals, occupy defenders and bring others into play. He does that. He’s an aerial threat, he has pace and he can finish. I think he’s tailormade for Liverpool.
“Fingers crossed he does sign. There aren’t too many decent ones out there and last season showed how badly Liverpool needed another centre-forward.
“Of course Danny Ings and Divock Origi have also come in. But it would be asking a lot for them to play a leading role. I think the more pressure you take off them, the better they will do and the more goals they will score.
“Six or seven weeks ago things looked a bit bleak and fans were disillusioned. But my mood has certainly changed and I think a lot of the fans feel the same.
“I am very hopeful after the business that’s been done. If Benteke signs, things are looking pretty good.”
Benteke has scored 49 goals in 100 games in all competitions for Villa following his move to the Birmingham side from Genk in 2012.
The 6ft 3ins striker missed last summer’s World Cup after he ruptured his Achilles tendon two months before the start of the tournament.
The Belgium man could become Liverpool’s seventh signing of the summer transfer window.