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Liverpool have agreed a fee, believed to be in the region of £20 million, with Roma for midfielder Alberto Aquilani.

The 25-year-old – who has previously been linked with Arsenal – has made more than 100 league appearances for the Stadio Olimpico outfit since making his debut in 2002, scoring nine times.

And with Spanish international Xabi Alonso passing his medical with Real Madrid on Wednesday, Anfield boss Benitez is keen to spend some of the reported £30 million transfer fee on a replacement, which is now expected to be the Italian who has 11 caps for the Azzurri.

“Alberto is a very good player and I’m delighted we’ve reached agreement with Roma for his transfer,” Benitez told the club’s official website. 

“He will travel to Merseyside later this week for a medical. Alberto has a winning mentality and great experience in both Serie A and the Champions League.

“He has long been recognised as a top class talent in Italy, captaining his country at both Under 19 and Under 21 levels before establishing himself in the senior national side.”