Liverpool agree deal with Portsmouth to sign Glen Johnson
23 June 2009 09:31
Liverpool are also understood to have agreed a deal with the player with merely the formalities of a medical and the drawing up of a final contract to be concluded.
Manager Rafa Benitez has been a long time admirer of Johnson, who has rebuilt his reputation as one of the best English right-backs during his time at Portsmouth after a difficult spell at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea were believed to have offered Portsmouth £18 million for their former player, with executive chairman Peter Storrie claimed last week revealing Chelsea's interest in the 24-year-old.
Johnson enjoyed arguably his best season in the Premier League last term as he established himself as England's first-choice right-back and attracted the interest of bigger clubs.
Storrie admitted last week that there was every chance Johnson could leave Fratton Park this summer, especially with the size of the fee being talked about.
Johnson's impending arrival would seem to suggest Alvaro Arbeloa's Anfield future is now uncertain, with Real Madrid his likely destination.
Johnson's first experience with a top four club was a forgettable one that perhaps came too early in the youngster's career when, after joining Chelsea from West Ham in 2003, he struggled to secure a regular first-team place and was loaned to Portsmouth before making the move permanent in 2007.
Storrie said last week: "Glen has obviously had a fantastic season for us and has established himself as one of the best right-backs in the league if not the country at the moment.
"I've known Glen for a long time since his West Ham days so when I re-signed him we talked it over and he asked if one of the big four clubs, who were in the Champions League, came in for him would we stand in his way of a move.
"I said that I couldn't do that provided the deal is good for Portsmouth and for Glen."