How much Sunderland would have to pay for Luciano Rodriguez and what he would offer amid transfer reports

The lowdown on reported Sunderland transfer target Luciano Rodriguez.
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Sunderland have been credited with interest in Uruguayan forward Luciano Rodriguez - but is the player ready to leave club side Liverpool Montevideo?

The 20-year-old scored the winning goal during Uruguay's 1-0 win over Italy at the Under-20 World Cup final in June and is said to be keen on a move to Europe.

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To find out more, we caught up with Nathan Joyes, South American football content creator and founder of The Copa Club to ask about Rodriguez’s situation in Uruguay.

How has Rodriguez fared in Uruguay?

NJ: “Rodriguez has been one of the bright, young talents in the Uruguayan Primera Division this season. Since scoring the winner in the U20 World Cup, the Uruguayan has scored six since returning to Liverpool - four of those have come in his last six matches. Liverpool aren't the biggest team in Uruguay, but they are starting to produce exciting, young talent and the 20-year-old is certainly one of those.”

What’s his best position and what are his main strengths?

NJ: “Rodriguez can operate in a 4-5-1 formation, as we saw during the World Cup, but is comfortable on the right wing in a 4-3-3 for Liverpool. With the freedom down the flanks, Rodriguez possesses plenty of pace and is strong for his age. There would certainly be no issues with him adapting to the English game on that front.

“The Uruguayan has a range of finishes in his locker. Free-kicks, long range efforts, as well as finding himself in the right position inside the box makes him a very handy player - you only have to see his positioning for his winner in the World Cup final. An agile, intelligent youngster has the right credentials to take the next step in his career.”

What areas of his game does he still need to improve at a young age?

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NJ: “He's still young and raw, and his overall decision making can be improved on occasions - but in the right environment and under the right management, there's been no indication why this can't be ironed out. His overall discipline could be improved on - he's been known to pick up needless cards here and there.”

Could you see him leaving in January? 

NJ: “The Clausura - the second part of the Uruguayan Primera season - comes to an end the week before Christmas - so it would be the ideal time to look for a venture.”

What sort of price would Liverpool Montevideo value him at?

NJ: “In terms of cost, Fabricio Diaz moved from Liverpool to Al -Gharafa in the summer for around 6-8million euros, and he was the U20 Uruguay captain and had the likes of Barcelona and Brighton interested. I'd guess Rodriguez's fee would be close to half that amount.”

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