The FIFA mediator who helped Fiorentina secure Bobby Duncan from Liverpool reveals he left partly because cousin Steven Gerrard “doesn’t get along with the current club.”
The 18-year-old finally made the move for €0.5m plus up to €1m in performance-related bonuses after a very public tug-of-war with the Reds.
“At the start, we didn’t know what Liverpool wanted to do with the lad, if the negotiations were feasible or with what type of deal,” intermediary Vincenzo Morabito told FirenzeViola.it.
“Initially, there was talk of €5-6m. He is Gerrard’s cousin, but he was put in limbo partly because Gerrard doesn’t get along with the current club.
“We had discussed a loan with obligation to buy, but the player was determined to leave Liverpool, he forced their hand and we agreed a permanent transfer.
“He’ll join the Primavera youth team initially, but is a great prospect. Fiorentina will decide day by day when he’s ready for the step up to the senior squad.
“Simone Inzaghi is a big admirer of Bobby Duncan, but Lazio had some issues with Liverpool due to previous negotiations they had for their young players, so were unable to get talks going with them.
“He can be compared to Wayne Rooney, as he has this explosive physique and pace. He has always scored goals, but the biggest obstacle is adapting to Italian football, something English players have always struggled with.
“I hope Giancarlo Antognoni can help give him the right advice and help him settle in.”