Marko Grujic is expected to complete his fourth loan move as a Liverpool player next week, with reports in Germany claiming a deal has already been agreed.
Jurgen Klopp made Grujic his first signing as Reds manager back in January 2016, when on the recommendation of Zeljko Buvac the Serbian joined from Red Star Belgrade.
The midfielder stayed on loan at Red Star for the second half of that campaign, before another spell away with Cardiff to close out 2017/18.
Last season was his most impressive yet, as Grujic proved his ability in a key role at Hertha Berlin in the Bundesliga, gaining admirers on the pitch, in the stands and among the backroom at the Olympiastadion.
Though two ankle injuries limited his appearances, the 23-year-old scored five goals and laid on one assist in 21 games, and both he and the club expressed their desire to extend the deal.
This seemed unlikely given Hertha’s 11th-placed finish means no European football next season, but according to Kicker, they have beaten Werder Bremen and Eintracht Frankfurt to secure Grujic’s services for 2019/20.
The German publication claims Serie A challengers Atalanta were also in the running, but Hertha have “won the race.”
Kicker cite Grujic and his agent, along with Hertha sporting director Michael Preetz, as sources, as they report that the two clubs have “agreed on the framework” of a second loan.
They reference an interview they conducted with Grujic in March, in which he confirmed he would “like to stay in Berlin” if he left Liverpool again.
However, it is stressed that the Reds’ No. 16 still has ambitions of earning a long-term role under Klopp at Anfield.
Whether this is likely remains to be seen, as Grujic will turn 24 in April and, having made just 14 appearances for the first team so far, is low down the pecking order on Merseyside.
Liverpool have signed Gini Wijnaldum, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita and Fabinho in the years since his £5.1 million move from Red Star.