LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, September 19, 2021: Liverpool's Tony Gallacher during the Premier League 2 Division 1 match between Liverpool FC Under-23's and Leeds United AFC Under-23's at the Liverpool Academy. Leeds United won 4-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool confirm exit of Scottish youngster after 4 years at Anfield

Liverpool youngster Tony Gallacher has left the club to join Scottish side St Johnstone on a permanent deal, four years after arriving at Anfield from Falkirk.

Gallacher was an exciting addition in the January transfer window of 2018, posing with Sir Kenny Dalglish as he completed a £200,000 switch.

He had been tracked by both Man United and Barcelona, having made his senior debut for Scottish second-tier side Falkirk as a 16-year-old, but earned a move to Merseyside after a successful trial.

A versatile defender who is most comfortable at left-back but has also played at right-back and centre-back in the academy, Gallacher has rarely featured in the first-team reckoning.

However, he has part of the youth side that played Aston Villa in the League Cup quarter-finals in 2019, as well as being on the bench for the FA Cup victory over Shrewsbury months later.

But with his contract due to expire, Gallacher has now returned to his homeland to join Scottish Premiership side St Johnstone on a permanent deal.

The 22-year-old, who has signed a two-and-a-half-year contract with the Perth outfit, had previously spent time on loan with Toronto FC and was close to a free transfer to Sunderland in the summer.

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - Friday, September 20, 2019: Liverpool's Tony Gallacher during the Under-23 FA Premier League 2 Division 1 match between Leicester City FC and Liverpool FC at Holmes Park. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Joining the 12th-placed side, however, Gallacher spoke of his desire to move in search of regular first-team football.

“I feel very lucky to have been part of a massive football club with so many wonderful professionals and people. It was an incredible education,” he told St Johnstone’s official website.

“But I felt the time was right to look for first-team football and an exciting opportunity presented itself at St Johnstone.

“Having been out on loan at Toronto, I enjoyed my time there and it made me want more and more first-team football.

“It’s now up to me to show everyone at St Johnstone that I’m good enough to play regular first-team football and that’s what I plan to do.”

Gallacher is the first player to leave Liverpool in the January transfer window, while Leighton Clarkson has returned to the club after the termination of his loan at Blackburn.