HomeTRANSFERSLiverpool could lose millions as a result of the transfer provision issue...

Liverpool could lose millions as a result of the transfer provision issue which Nobody is talking about


Liverpool could lose millions as a result of the transfer provision issue which Nobody is talking about

 FSG possibly changing its transfer policy, despite Liverpool missing out on a multi-million pound windfall.

In recent years, Liverpool has developed a reputation for selling unwanted players for large sums of money, thereby bolstering their transfer kitty.

Yet, at a time when they desperately need a midfield overhaul and will have to pay a club-record fee if they are to sign first-choice target Jude Bellingham in the summer, they have run out of in-demand players to let go.

Nat Phillips could leave before the January transfer window closes next week, while Caoimhin Kelleher is expected to command a high fee if the Republic of Ireland international decides to leave Anfield in search of first-team football. However, beyond those two, Liverpool’s selling well appears to be dry.

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Of course, there will be vacancies in their squad come the summer, with Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Roberto Firmino, James Milner, Adrian, and Arthur Melo all out of contract at the end of the season. However, in order to bring in the necessary reinforcements, FSG will need to invest directly in the Reds’ squad rather than rely on significant funds raised through sales.

Such activity, however, would be in contrast to recent windows at Anfield, where Liverpool’s owners have been repeatedly chastised for their lack of investment in Klopp’s squad. Previously, they were shielded by results; however, now that they are actively seeking new investors, the scrutiny they face is greater than ever.

While Cody Gakpo, Darwin Nunez, Luis Diaz, and Ibrahima Konate all cost large sums in the previous four transfer windows, the £37 million Dutchman, £37 million Colombian, and £36 million Frenchman were the only new arrivals. Meanwhile, while the £64m Uruguayan was accompanied by Fabio Carvalho, Calvin Ramsay, and Arthur Melo on loan, the young duo cost less than a combined £10m.

As a result, the last time Liverpool spent more than £20 million on more than one player in the same window was in the summer of 2020, when they signed Thiago Alcantara and Diogo Jota. It is the first time the Reds have spent in this manner since they began winning trophies under Klopp, with Nunez also the only signing to cost significantly more than £40 million since their Champions League victory in 2019.

It’s no surprise that FSG has been chastised by transfer-hungry social media hordes as Liverpool went from champions of England, Europe, and the world, and on the verge of completing an unprecedented quadruple, to sleep-walking into a season of transition in the mid-table doldrums.

It’s a stark contrast to the Reds’ Philippe Coutinho-aided transfer activity in 2018, when they broke their club record by signing Virgil van Dijk for £75 million in January before spending £174.25 million the following summer to bring in Alisson Becker, Naby Keita, Fabinho, and Xherdan Shaqiri following their Champions League final loss to Real Madrid.

Meanwhile, in the summer of 2017, FSG spent £43.9 million on Mohamed Salah and £40 million on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, as well as £35 million on Sadio Mane and £25 million on Gini Wijnaldum a year earlier, as they successfully transformed Liverpool into one of England and Europe’s strongest teams. If only they had worked as hard to keep the Reds in first place.

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Now, Liverpool’s squad requires such investment once more, and it’s possible that FSG’s critics are aware that it coincides with their search for new investors while remaining open to a full takeover.

In the meantime, the Reds must make do with what they have. They appear to lack the funds to strengthen their squad further in January, with Klopp repeatedly insisting that Liverpool’s mid-season business is complete, and are not financially capable of competing with the likes of Manchester City.

It remains to be seen whether they will be able to sign Bellingham and other needed players in the summer without new investors, and potentially without the riches of Champions League football as well. It is safe to say that the skeptics are skeptical.

To add insult to injury, Liverpool are not only lacking in fringe players who could be sold to bolster their transfer budget, but they are also set to miss out on a number of windfalls.

In recent years, including sell-on clauses in player exits has been common practice, with the Reds earning windfalls when their former players have moved on again if sold for a profit during the terms of their original contract. For example, Liverpool received approximately £2 million as a result of Danny Ings’ £30 million transfer from Southampton to Aston Villa, and approximately £1.5 million as a result of Taiwo Awoniyi’s £17.5 million transfer from Union Berlin to Nottingham Forest.

However, with a number of those clauses now declared invalid, are unlikely to receive any such financial boosts in the near future.

When selling Luis Alberto to Lazio for £4.3 million in August 2016, Liverpool included a 30% sell-on clause, a 20% sell-on clause when selling Danny Ward to Leicester City for £12.5 million in July 2018, and a 20% sell-on clause when selling Dominic Solanke to AFC Bournemouth for £24 million in January 2019. However, all three players have signed new contracts with their respective clubs since leaving Anfield, which means the Reds are no longer entitled to such funds if they are sold for a profit.

Meanwhile, they appear to be out of luck if they sell Ryan Kent to Rangers in September 2019. His £7 million move to Ibrox included a 20% sell-on clause, but the winger’s contract expires next summer. As a result, unless the Reds sell the 26-year-old for a profit before the January transfer deadline, Liverpool’s sell-on clause will expire.

Liverpool are also unlikely to profit financially from the 20% sell-on clause included in Rafa Camacho’s £7 million move to Sporting Lisbon in June 2019 and Rhian Brewster’s £23.5 million move to Sheffield United in October 2020.

The Portuguese winger is currently on loan for the third consecutive season, but unlike previous loan spells with Rio Ave and Belenenses in the Portuguese Primeira Liga, the 22-year-old is now with Aris in Greece. The transfer reportedly includes a purchase option, and with Camacho hardly pulling up trees as he approaches the final year of his contract, the Lisbon club are unlikely to be able to sell him for a profit.

Meanwhile, with Brewster out injured and having only scored five goals in three seasons with Sheffield United, the Blades’ hopes of selling the striker for more than £23.5m have long since died.

Similarly, Liverpool appear unlikely to benefit from the 15% sell-on clause included in Ki-Jana Hoever’s £13.5m move to Wolves in September 2020. The 21-year-old made 25 appearances for Molineux in his first two seasons before falling out of favor with former manager Bruno Lage.

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He was loaned to PSV Eindhoven last summer, but he has since had that temporary deal cancelled after making only eight appearances for the Dutch club, four of which were starts, and playing just once since mid-October.

Wolves sporting director Matt Hobbs has confirmed that the club intends to loan Hoever out again for the second half of the season rather than keep him in Julen Lopetegui’s first team squad.

“PSV’s interest in Fabio (Silva) has provided us with the opportunity to pull Ki out,” Hobbs told Wolves’ official website. “We’ve been able to bring Ki back while they contribute to his wages for the rest of the season and we can pick a new club for him for the second part of the season, based purely on a football reason.

“We can pick the best club that will give him good minutes and the right style of football, without having to think about anything else.”

While Hoever is still young enough to change his fortunes, given his Wolves career to date, it would be surprising if he was sold for a profit in the future.

For the record, Liverpool also included a 20% sell-on clause in Ovie Ejaria’s £3.5m move to Reading in August 2020, and a 20% sell-on clause in Liam Millar’s £1.3m move to FC Basel, a 20% sell-on clause in Kamil Grabara’s £3m move to FC Copenhagen, a 15% sell-on clause in Harry Wilson’s £12m move to Fulham, and a 10% sell-on clause in Marko Grujic’s £10.5m move to FC Porto – all in the summer of 2021. But it remains to be seen whether those clauses will ever be able to be activated as well.

As a result, if Liverpool is to perform the necessary surgery on their aging and injury-prone squad this summer, player sales will be of little use. Klopp knows what needs to be done after four years of limited investment that has suddenly left the club falling behind rivals. It is now up to FSG to find alternative measures to ensure that the Reds are in a strong enough position to make it happen.

Liverpool could lose millions as a result of the transfer provision issue which Nobody is talking about

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