21 Jul 2016

Contact Made: Liverpool close to sealing surprise loan transfer for 'incredible' £25k-a-week international

A few months ago, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp outlined his dissatisfaction with the club's loan policy, and insisted that the club needs to change its approach and 'hold onto young players' longer. In theory, that's a great idea, but in practice, it's much harder to implement, especially with a reduced fixture schedule. Despite Klopp's comments, players continue to go out on loan, and it looks like Jon Flanagan is the next to leave the club this summer.

According to the Daily Mail:

"Jon Flanagan is considering a loan move to Burnley. He was left out of the pre-season squad to face Huddersfield and has been given the chance to join [Burnley] for the season".

Given his recent new contract (reportedly worth £25k-a-week) and Liverpool's dearth of decent full-back options, this is a bit of a surprise move, and is arguably tantamount to a vote of no-confidence:

* Liverpool need good options at left-back, and Flanagan has played there many times, yet Klopp is seemingly willing to let him leave. If the manager trusted Flanagan, he'd keep him in the squad as a cover option.

* Flanagan is not a kid anymore - he's 23, and if he's not in Klopp's plans now (when Liverpool desperately need full-backs), then it doesn't bode well for the future.

It's simple: if Klopp rated Flanagan, he'd keep him in the squad this season as cover for Alberto Moreno and Nathaniel Clyne.

On the plus side, it'll be good for Flanagan to go on loan to a Premier League club, and not a Championship/League One team. Flanno has decent first-team experience, and he won't learn anything by dropping down one or two levels of play.

Unfortunately, If Flanagan goes on loan then it's (arguably) the beginning of the end for his Liverpool career. Loanees very rarely (if ever) return to the club to become first-team regulars, and Flanagan will have to buck a long-standing historical trend to reverse that reality.

Personally, I'm not fussed if Flanagan goes out on loan (or ultimately leaves). He's yet another overrated huff-and-puff British player, and the Reds can do better.

* Mar 2016: Hailed by Jordon Henderson for his 'incredible' dedication.


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