Alberto Aquilani has made no secret of his desire to remain in Italy following his loan from Liverpool to Juventus this past summer. However, given the relatively high price on Juventus' buyout option, it appears that the two clubs will battle over Aquilani's potential transfer fee, if Liverpool does not opt to bring Aquilani back to Anfield.
Aquilani, in truth, was perhaps not given a full chance to settle with Liverpool after being purchased for £20 million in the summer of 2009. While he made 26 appearances for the Reds, he rarely played full matches, or in his desired attacking-midfield role. Thereafter, Roy Hodgson allowed him to return to Italy on loan with Juve.
Since, Aquilani has impressed, leading both the 26-year-old and the club to wish to make the deal permanent.
"England was a great experience, but I am here to stay," Aquilani said this past summer. However, Aquilani has expressed his worry that because of the high price in his buyout clause that the move may not become permanent.
"There is a loan where they [Juventus] have a right, but it is a very high option," Aquilani told Sky Sports. "In football today, the option to buy me is a high one, and so I know it will not be easy."
Juve boss Giuseppe Marotta, though, attempted to quell Aquilani's anxiety on the subject this past weekend, telling Sky Sports that the club will do everything it can to keep the midfielder.
"Aquilani is a player of value and is doing very well. We're happy," said Marotta. "He has to feel comfortable because the fact that we took him on loan didn't mean that we had to evaluate him. His qualities have been known since he played in the youth of Roma and in the national team.
"In due time we'll meet with Liverpool and we will do everything to keep him with us."
Given the emergence of Raul Meireles at Anfield, however, the need for Liverpool to retain the expensive Aquilani may have been diminished.
Liverpool, however, may be looking to recoup much of the £20 million paid for Aquilani, with reports naming a potential £13.5 million asking price. That figure may be more than what Juve is willing to pay.