Mexes not on his way to Anfield
By Graeme Bailey
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Philippe Mexes's agent has dismissed claims that Liverpool have won the race for his client's signature and insists that the French star will only move to a team playing in the UEFA Champions League.
Auxerre chief Guy Roux has been quoted as saying that the international defender was on his way to Anfield, but this has been rubbished by his representative Olivier Jouanneaux.
In an exclusive interview for skysports.com, Jouanneaux has explained that claims suggesting Mexes had signed for Liverpool were completely untrue.
"There has been no contact with Liverpool - with me, Philippe or Auxerre," he told skysports.com.
"I spoke to Guy Roux on Friday and he told me this was not true.
"If he has been saying something then it is not helpful to Philippe. He has also been quoted in the Italian press about clubs there.
"We don't really expect the club to speculate like this.
"Guy Roux told us at the beginning of the season that Philippe was free to leave and we could talk with other clubs, but it is impossible for us to negotiate with any club as Auxerre have not told us how much they want for him.
"We are worried about the situation with Auxerre, because they need to inform us about what they want for him."
On Liverpool, Jouanneaux denied that Roux was looking to try and help out his old friend Gerard Houllier - who has already agreed a deal for his team-mate Djibril Cisse.
"Mexes is completely different from Cisse," he continued.
"I did ask Roux about Liverpool and he has not pushed Philippe to them or any club. I asked him and he said he would not do it, because he knows Philippe will not be pushed into joining any club he doesn't want to."
Jouanneaux then confirmed that Liverpool would only be able to sign Mexes if they qualified for the Champions League.
"He wants to play in the Champions League, it is as simple as that," he added.
"If he did not want that, then he could remain with Auxerre.
"If they do not qualify then it would be impossible, although we have not had any contact with them anyway.
"We don't know whether there will be contact in the future, but we have not talked with anyone."
Liverpool have been strongly linked in recent weeks with renewed interest in Mexes, but French sources insist that Roma, Internazionale, Marseille and Manchester United are the clubs leading the chase, with the Roman club looking favourites at this stage.