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Liverpool close to Luis Suarez sale

The ESPN FC World Cup Encore panel discuss the possibility of Luis Suarez leaving Liverpool and who can replace him.

Barcelona have the framework of a deal in place to buy Luis Suarez -- but Liverpool are waiting to see if Alexis Sanchez will move to Anfield before signing off the sale.

Sources have told ESPN FC that the La Liga giants are prepared to meet the release clause in Suarez's contract, which is reported to be between 70 million and 80 million pounds.

Liverpool are interested in signing Sanchez in part-exchange, a deal that Barca are prepared to sanction. But even if the Chile international decides to stay at the Nou Camp or move elsewhere, Liverpool are prepared to sell Suarez.

Manager Brendan Rodgers is an admirer of 25-year-old Sanchez, who helped Chile reach the World Cup's round of 16, and the Reds are prepared to give the winger time to decide whether he wants to come to Anfield, meaning that a deal for Suarez is unlikely to be completed until next week at the earliest.

Talks over a deal for the Uruguay striker, 27, have progressed quickly since a Barcelona delegation arrived in London on Wednesday to meet Reds chief executive Ian Ayre. That is despite the fact that Suarez is serving a four-month worldwide suspension for biting defender Giorgio Chiellini during Uruguay's 1-0 World Cup Group D win over Italy in the Brazilian city of Natal on June 24.

FIFA has confirmed, though, that the ban does not extend to transfers or the undertaking of a medical.

Suarez ended up staying at Liverpool last summer despite giving several interviews stating that he wanted to leave, with the Reds rejecting two bids from Arsenal. He signed a contract extension last December, committing him to staying at Anfield until 2018, although the inclusion of a release clause did leave the door open to an exit. 

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