Where every Liverpool loanee could end up this summer – who can return to an Anfield role?

We take a look at the futures of Liverpool’s loaned players and assess whether any can make it into Jurgen Klopp’s first-team plans for next season.


Among Klopp’s planning for the 2019/20 campaign will be deciding on the futures of 14 of the Reds’ 16 loanees.

Danny Ings has already agreed a permanent £20 million switch to Southampton, while Loris Karius has another season to go on his two-year loan at Besiktas.

But the remaining borrowed Reds will all be hoping their form at temporary clubs has been good enough to earn an Anfield role for next season.

We have taken a look at who may have succeeded in that and discuss what the future could hold for those who didn’t.

 

Marko Grujic

Marko GRUJIC (B), jubilation, cheer, joy, victory, happy, success, football 1st Bundesliga, 14th matchday, Hertha BSC Berlin (B) - Eintracht Frankfurt (F) 1: 0, on 08.12.2018 in Berlin / Germany. ¨ | usage worldwide

This has been a fantastic season for the Serbian, who shone on the Bundesliga stage as a key figure in Hertha Berlin’s midfield.

Grujic proved his top-level quality with consistently impressive form as an all-action, box-to-box player, which included five goals and an assist.

Hertha boss Pal Dardai labelled him Hertha’s “best midfielder in 20 years,” and the German club have made no secret of their desire to bring him back next season.

However, while Atletico Madrid are also interested in a permanent deal, now seems the moment for Grujic to shine at Anfield.

Verdict: Reintroduce into first-team squad for pre-season

It seems like it’s now or never for Grujic at Liverpool, and after a great season he should be given the chance to fight for his place.

 

Nathaniel Clyne

Bournemouth's Nathaniel Clyne (Image: Mark Kerton/PA Wire. )

The right-back spent the second half of the campaign at Bournemouth but it was a largely uninspiring period.

Clyne played 15 times, producing one assist, but his form was mixed and he was unable to nail down the starting berth as he finished the season operating at left-back.

Clyne left Anfield in search of first-team football and after this flat spell it is hard to see his prospects improving at Dean Court.

West Ham are also interested, though, and Liverpool want around £15 million.

Verdict: No future – summer sale

Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez are Klopp’s preferred options and could be for the long-term, so a permanent exit is best for both parties.

 

Harry Wilson

Derby County's Harry Wilson celebrates scoring his side's first goal of the game (Richard Sellers/EMPICS Sport)

Wilson was another of Liverpool’s top-performing loanees, enjoying a brilliant campaign at Championship promotion contenders Derby.

The Welshman has been excellent all season, hitting an impressive 18 goals and six assists so far and he developed into a big-game player, delivering decisive contributions at vital moments.

Indeed, Wilson fired Derby to the playoffs with a nerveless penalty on the final day, before doing the same in the semi-final second leg to help the Rams reach Wembley.

It has been a magnificent campaign that could yet be capped off with a dream promotion, and Wilson could not have done any more to show he is ready.

Verdict: Potential for Anfield future – Premier League loan the next step

Wilson has shone in the Championship on two separate spells, but a step into Klopp’s squad still seems one too far despite his obvious quality.

A loan to a top-flight club is the next progression to provide a clearer indication of his suitability—that could come with Derby if they are promoted.

 

Ovie Ejaria

Ovie Ejaria, Reading (Mike Egerton/PA Archive/PA Images)

Ejaria had a tough initial spell at Rangers but enjoyed a good second half of the season at Reading.

The midfielder produced consistently good form and did so while helping the Royals to safety, with one goal and two assists in 16 outings.

Ejaria unquestionably made a strong impact in the second tier, but it is not enough to suggest he can help Klopp’s Reds to major honours next season.

Verdict: No immediate future – another loan likely

After three short-term spells, Ejaria would benefit from a successful season-long move next season, or even a sale.

 

Herbie Kane

Doncaster Rovers' Herbie Kane (Dave Howarth/PA Archive/PA Images)

A first loan spell in senior football for the midfielder could not have gone any better, illustrated by being rewarded with a new-long term Reds contract mid-season.

Kane played a key role in leading Doncaster to the League One playoffs—where his side lost at the semi-final stage—becoming a key player and a star performer, making 49 appearances.

He developed into a goalscoring midfielder, notching seven times while producing 10 assists, and an excellent campaign in the third tier showed he is ready for the next level.

Verdict: Championship loan move to continue development

A temporary spell to a Championship club is the obvious next step for Kane, and that could come with Hull.

 

Adam Bogdan

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, March 17, 2018: Liverpool's goalkeeper Adam Bogdan during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Watford FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

It’s hard to believe that the Hungarian ‘keeper is still on Liverpool’s books.

Bogdan could have had a season like Alisson’s while at Hibernian and he still wouldn’t have an Anfield future.

He didn’t, regardless, and he will finally leave this summer upon the expiry of his contract.

Verdict: Released

 

Ryan Kent

Rangers Ryan Kent during the UEFA Europa League, Second Qualifying Round, Second Leg match at Ibrox, Glasgow.

A season under Steven Gerrard’s tutelage at Rangers worked a treat as Kent finally lived up to his promise with a superb season in Scotland.

The winger was in excellent form all campaign and collected the Scottish PFA’s Young Player of the Year award for a great campaign which has included six goals and nine assists.

While Kent clearly impressed in the Scottish top flight, stepping up to Klopp’s first team is another level entirely.

Verdict: Anfield role unlikely – summer sale on the cards

Kent is clearly a big talent but it’s unlikely he will force his way into Klopp’s squad—though this says more about Liverpool than the 22-year-old.

The Reds should recoup a good fee, setting a £12 million price tag, and Kent will no doubt have a good career.

 

Sheyi Ojo

BIRKENHEAD, ENGLAND - Tuesday, July 10, 2018: Liverpool's Sheyi Ojo celebrates scoring the second goal during a preseason friendly match between Tranmere Rovers FC and Liverpool FC at Prenton Park. (Pic by Paul Greenwood/Propaganda)

This latest spell with Ligue 1 side Stade de Reims proved to be a disappointing one for the 21-year-old.

Ojo failed to build on early promise and has made 18 appearances all season—including only six starts—with just six of those outings coming after Christmas.

He produced a goal and an assist, but a first-team chance at Anfield looks to have come and gone.

Verdict: No future – time for a permanent exit

Ojo’s promise is unlikely to be fulfilled at Liverpool and a permanent departure this summer surely awaits.

 

Liam Millar

ST HELENS, ENGLAND - Monday, December 10, 2018: Liverpool's Liam Millar celebrates scoring the second goal during the UEFA Youth League Group C match between Liverpool FC and SSC Napoli at Langtree Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

An educational first loan at Kilmarnock was a fruitful six-month experience for the Canadian striker.

Millar has showed his talent while ending the season in confident form, delivering a goal and assist from 13 outings—only two of which have been starts.

Promising signs but not Anfield ready just yet.

Verdict: A first season-long move to continue senior football development

It’s vital Millar finds another club where he will enjoy regular first-team football to continue his progression.

A return to the Scottish top-flight, or a switch to the Championship, would be ideal.

 

Taiwo Awoniyi

Mouscron's Taiwo Awoniyi celebrates after scoring during a soccer game between Standard de Liege and Royal Excel Mouscron, Saturday 02 March 2019 in Liege, on the 28th day of the 'Jupiler Pro League' Belgian soccer championship season 2018-2019. BELGA PHOTO BRUNO FAHY

It was a season of two halves for Awoniyi, who struggled to make the step up at KAA Gent before exploding to his best form back at Royal Excel Mouscron.

He netted just three times in 22 games for Gent, but raised his game at Mouscron to score 11 and deliver three assists in 16 appearances.

Awoniyi clearly has talent but the work permit situation complicates everything.

Liverpool are said to still have hopes for Awoniyi to make the grade, but he has cast doubt on that, stating that he is unlikely to obtain a work permit which could force a move.

Verdict: Summer sale seems likely

Taking the complexity of the situation into account, a summer sale seems likely.

Several European clubs are interested including Schalke, and with a £10 million switch mooted it makes sense for Liverpool to cash in.

 

Kamil Grabara

NAPLES, ITALY - Tuesday, October 2, 2018: Liverpool's goalkeeper Kamil Grabara during a training session ahead of the UEFA Champions League Group C match between S.S.C. Napoli and Liverpool FC at Stadio San Paolo. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

A six-month move to Danish side AGF Aarhus proved an excellent first loan for the Polish goalkeeper.

After some early teething problems, Grabara showed his quality with top form to help his side enjoy a great second half of the season with a shot at qualifying for the Europa League.

The 20-year-old, who has kept six clean sheets so far, is clearly ready for a bigger stage.

Verdict: Potential for Liverpool future – loan to higher level

A temporary move either to the Championship or a club able to offer European football would be ideal to further Grabara’s development.

 

Pedro Chirivella

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Friday, August 17, 2018: Liverpool's Pedro Chirivella during the Under-23 FA Premier League 2 Division 1 match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This was a nightmare season of stagnation for Chirivella, who was unable to play for Spanish second-tier side Extramadura due to an administration error in his signing.

He completely missed out on a season of progress, and it is now even more crucial that Chirivella plays a full campaign next season.

Verdict: No future – permanent exit awaits

Chirivella has openly stated his desire to leave Anfield, acknowledging the need for first-team football to get back on track.

A move back to Spain as he wants would be perfect.

 

Allan Rodrigues

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, December 9, 2015: Liverpool's Allan Rodrigues de Sousa during a training session at Melwood Training Ground ahead of the UEFA Europa League Group Stage Group B match against FC Sion. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Allan is another who has had his Anfield path blocked by work permit issues, which forced him to Fluminense for a sixth loan move of his Reds career.

By now it is clear it is never going to work out and he has shown little in all those spells to suggest he is of the required level anyway.

Verdict: No future – permanent exit awaits

The Brazilian has spoken of his desire to stay at Fluminense which would make sense for all involved.

 

Anderson Arroyo

KAA Gent's new player Anderson Arroyo Cordoba pictured in action during a training session of Belgian soccer team KAA Gent, during the 2018-2019 Jupiler Pro League season, Friday 07 September 2018, in Gent. BELGA PHOTO JASPER JACOBS

Arroyo—another who requires a work permit—is something of an unknown quantity to Reds fans, having spent all of his two years as a Liverpool player on two European loan moves.

Neither spell has proven a roaring success, with this season at KAA Gent disappointing given he spent the campaign with the club’s U21 side.

There are clearly hopes for him at just 19, so another European loan beckons.

Verdict: Loan to first-team environment

Arroyo needs to be into a first-team environment in a European league to further his progression.

More from This Is Anfield



Fan Comments