Arsenal and Liverpool to fight it out for Swansea captain Williams

Arsenal this summer intend to step up their interest in Swansea City captain Ashley Williams but face competition from Liverpool, where former Swans boss Brendan Rodgers is keen to be re-united with the Wales international centre-back, the Daily Mail has reported.

The newspaper adds that Williams has been one of Swansea’s outstanding players in an impressive year for the Welsh club under Michael Laudrup, skippering the team to the top half of the Premier League and success in the League Cup, which was clinched with an emphatic 5-0 win over League Two side Bradford City.

Williams is also the captain of Wales and caught the eye of Arsenal chief scout Steve Rowley, with Arsene Wenger also a fan of the 28-year-old. But Rodgers wants to take Williams to Anfield, having worked with him up close at Swansea, with Jamie Carragher set to retire from football at the end of the season.

It is claimed by the Mail that Williams would be open to either move, eager to experience playing for a more high-profile club than Swansea. Formerly of Hednesford Town and Stockport County, Williams joined Swansea – initially on loan – in 2008, and has played more than 200 games for the Liberty Stadium side.

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