Liverpool are playing hard ball with Premier League champions Manchester City over the proposed transfer of centre-back Daniel Agger.

City have already approached Liverpool about the availability of the defender and will have been encouraged to hear comments from Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers revealing that "every player has his price".

According to a report in the Daily Mirror, Liverpool are demanding a deal which would see them gain £23million and midfielder Adam Johnson moving to Anfield on a season-long loan deal.

Daniel Agger
Liverpool are demanding £23m and Adam Johnson for Daniel Agger [Reuters]

The paper claims that Liverpool have already turned down bids of £13million and £20m as Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini attempts to further strengthen his options in the heart of defence.

The offers have so far been rejected by the owners of Liverpool, Fenway Sports Group, and it seems they are keen to take advantage of the significant spending power that Manchester City possess.

As well as the money they want Johnson to join for the season as Rodgers attempts to strengthen a squad which underachieved in the league as they claimed an eighth place finish.

Johnson has struggled to become a first team regular at Manchester City under Roberto Mancini with the Italian preferring to use the England international as an impact player from the bench.

There are a host of attacking midfielders for Mancini to choose from in the City squad and it could well be that Liverpool feel they can hold out for the best deal as Agger still has two years remaining on his current contract.

The 27-year-old has been at Anfield for six years but has only made 119 league appearances as injuries have often prevented him from consistently playing throughout the season.

He made his joint highest number of appearances in the league last season when he featured in 27 games, but Liverpool do have some other options already at the club that can partner Martin Skrtel in Jamie Carragher, Sebastian Coates and Martin Kelly.