Man City launch £18m bid for Alonso

It is believed Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez is ready to sell Alonso at the right price as he is closing in on Aston Villa ace Gareth Barry.

The 27-year-old has been a hit at Anfield and has also been linked with Real Madrid and Arsenal.

A source close to City told News of the World: “Alonso has proved this season that he is the type of player Hughes needs. He is totally at home in English football, has great experience and he would fit straight in.

“City do need strong characters because everybody has seen the problems Robinho has been causing behind the scenes. It’s down to the player. There are other clubs looking but financially Liverpool and Alonso will not find a better deal.”