Manchester City boss Sven Goran Eriksson has warned Liverpool off emerging midfielder Michael Johnson.
Reds manager Rafa Benitez is reported to be keen on the England Under 21 international, but Eriksson sees Johnson as vital to his on-going City revolution.
And the Swede joked that the only way Benitez could tempt him to part with his prized asset is to give him Steven Gerrard or sell Anfield.
Eriksson said: "I have heard rumours that Liverpool wanted to buy him. I have never asked Michael about that but he is very happy here.
"If Liverpool did come to buy him, they would have to sell their stadium first! Or swap him for Steven Gerrard... that's the only way he would go!
"But I don't think he wants to go anywhere. He has been playing every game for us apart from when he was injured, so I see no reason why he would want to go."
Eriksson added: "Michael is a very good player and he will be even better in the future. I'm also pretty sure that he'll play for England.
"He's already in the Under 21s and he has a big chance to be in the senior team.
"He is a little different to Gerrard - who bites a little more than Michael - but Johnson can score goals, pass, defend and run strongly.
"He's an all-round footballer with a fantastic temperament."
And Eriksson believes City fully deserve their current league position after an impressive start to the season.
He said: "If you'd have told me in August we would be so high in the table and staying there, I would have been surprised, but not now.
"If you look at the games we have played so far we haven't been stealing points.
"Maybe we were a little bit lucky against Manchester United because they could have scored, but I think in other games we could have done better.
"Overall, though, I think we are in the right place, one we deserve."