Marko Grujic won promotion and Ovie Ejaria scored as loan spells begin to draw to a close for Liverpool’s loanees at home and abroad.
It was a week of mixed fortunes for the borrowed Reds and spells away from Anfield drew to a close for certain loanees.
Only eight Reds enjoyed game time with the remaining loanees being either dropped, injured or suspended in Naby Keita’s case.
Here’s the lowdown on this week’s action starting with a hectic final day in the Championship.
There was a huge final day in the Championship with highs and lows for the Reds involved…
The highlight of a dramatic final day in the second tier came for Grujic as Cardiff finalised automatic promotion to the Premier League.
The Serbian didn’t feature in the goalless draw at Reading which sealed it—an unused sub on the day—but he certainly played his part during his time in south Wales.
Dropped out of the side towards the end but Marko Grujic played a key role in Cardiff’s promotion season. ? pic.twitter.com/3W4RucHyh1
— Jack Lusby (@jacklusby_) May 6, 2018
Grujic played 13 times for the Bluebirds and enjoyed a superb 12-game unbeaten league run, which proved crucial to giving Cardiff control of the race for second place which they won to reach the top flight.
Ovie Ejaria also provided a positive as he signed off a tough spell at relegated Sunderland with a moment to remember—scoring his first senior goal in a 3-0 win over champions Wolves.
The creative midfielder opened the scoring and his Sunderland account as he converted on the rebound from close range after a shot was parried.
It brought a nice end to what will have been an eye-opening experience at the Stadium of Light for Ejaria, who made 11 appearances in a mixed spell on Wearside.
However Harry Wilson was denied the perfect ending at Hull, who closed off with a 1-1 draw at Brentford to finish 18th in the table.
The Wales international saw a second-half penalty saved, denying him the chance to end his time at the KCOM Stadium on a fitting note as the match-winner.
While Wilson didn’t sign off as the hero—unlike so many games this season—his spell was a roaring success as he scored seven goals and claimed four assists in 14 appearances.
Hull boss Nigel Adkins has already made no secret that he would love Wilson back next season—but his fine form may have persuaded Jurgen Klopp to introduce him into the first-team fold at Anfield.
Three Reds were uninvolved on the final day as two disappointing spells came to end.
Jon Flanagan was left out as Bolton claimed a dramatic 3-2 win over Nottingham Forest to miraculously escape relegation to League One.
His time at the Macron Stadium was uninspiring though, with Flanagan making just eight appearances.
It was a similar story for Ryan Kent whose unrewarding spell at Bristol City ended without involvement for the sixth game running.
Kent made 11 appearances at Ashton Gate—playing only three full games—and posted two assists.
Finally, Sheyi Ojo was left out of Fulham’s 2-0 loss at Birmingham—a result that consigned the Cottagers to the play-offs.
He will now hope to feature in the promotion push, starting in upcoming semi-final ties against Derby.
The season came to end for two more Reds…
Pedro Chirivella’s productive campaign at Willem II ended on a fitting note—with another full outing in a 2-2 draw against Vitesse Arnhem on Sunday.
Chirivella played a key role in helping Willem to a safe 13th-placed finish as he established himself as a vital cog in the midfield.
That Chirivella started 30 of 34 Eredivisie games highlighted his importance, and he made 35 outings in total, posting four assists.
Corey Whelan returned to the fold at Yeovil for the final game and finished with a solid performance in a 1-1 draw at Lincoln.
After joining in January the full-back played 11 times for the League Two side—with his highlight undoubtedly scoring his first professional goal.
Four more Reds were in action…
After making a bright return to Wolfsburg’s lineup Divock Origi kept his place against a Naby Keita-less RB Leipzig on Saturday.
The Belgian was again in better form with a lively display as he fired five shots at goal with three on target—but his efforts proved in vain as his side slumped to a miserable 4-1 loss.
Also in Europe, Lazar Markovic was back in Anderlecht’s starting XI on Sunday and helped secure a 2-1 win over Club Brugge.
The Serbian has impressed in a No. 10 role in his few outings for the club but was deployed at left wing-back where he still managed a decent performance.
On home soil, Daniel Sturridge played the final 15 minutes as West Brom kept alive hopes of pulling off the great escape with a shock 1-0 win over Tottenham.
And finally, Matty Virtue continued his positive run as Notts County completed the regular League Two season with a goalless draw against already-promoted Luton.
The hard work doesn’t stop just yet for Virtue, who will now try to help County earn promotion through the play-offs—starting with a semi-final tie against Coventry.
Liverpool’s Loanees This Week
- Daniel Sturridge – Played 16 mins vs. Tottenham
- Lazar Markovic – Played 90 mins vs. Club Brugge
- Divock Origi – Played 90 mins vs. RB Leipzig
- Ovie Ejaria – Played 90 mins & scored vs. Wolves in final game of season
- Harry Wilson – Played 90 mins vs. Brentford in final game of season
- Pedro Chirivella – Played 90 mins vs. Vitesse Arnhem in final game of season
- Corey Whelan – Played 90 mins vs. Lincoln in final game of season
- Marko Grujic – Unused sub vs. Reading in final game of season
- Jon Flanagan – Left out of matchday squad vs. Nottingham Forest in final game of season
- Ryan Kent – Left out of matchday squad vs. Sheffield United in final game of season
- Sheyi Ojo – Left out of matchday squad vs. Birmingham
- Matty Virtue – Played 73 mins vs. Luton
- Connor Randall – Left out of matchday squad vs. Celtic
- Taiwo Awoniyi – Out for rest of the season
- Anderson Arroyo – Injured
- Naby Keita – Suspended