Liverpool defender snub to kick-start cut-price summer scramble
Reports claim Liverpool will not be taking up the option to turn defender Ozan Kabak’s loan stint into a permanent deal at the end of the season.
The 21-year-old was a winter loan signing from German club Schalke. Reds chief Jurgen Klopp brought him in to try and help a defence depleted by the loss of Virgil van Dijk. They have also been without Joel Matip and Joe Gomez for most of the campaign.
And, in the trio’s absence the Merseysiders have struggled to match last season’s heroics. Kabak has performed well for Liverpool, starting nine Premier League games.
After a shaky start against Leicester City, he has settled into his task well and earned plaudits for his displays. But, with the injured stars set to return next term, the Turkey international would struggle for a first-team spot.
His loan contract included an option to buy for around £18m, possibly rising to £26.5m with add-ons. However, according to The Sun, it seems as though Jurgen Klopp does not want to go down that route and he will return to Gelsenkirchen.
Kabak would probably have been a bench player, with appearances in cup competitions. And, with finances tight, it is deemed an unnecessary use of funds.
Having left a sinking Schalke ship in January, the youngster will now return to a club in the German second tier. Die Konigsblauen are rock bottom of the Bundesliga standings and will be relegated after Sunday’s final round of matches.
They have taken just 16 points all season and it is likely that Kabak will be sold this summer.
Clubs on alert for bargain Kabak deal
The Ankara-born ace will not be short of suitors in the off-season after his performances for Liverpool. It would be no surprise to see a few Premier League clubs make enquiries about his availability.
Schalke dropping into 2. Bundesliga will see his value fall. And English clubs will know that he has the ability to operate in the top flight.
But it will not be at Anfield, with Liverpool also heavily linked with a move for RB Leipzig centre-back Ibrahima Konate. Ben Davies was a shock January acquisition from Preston North End but has yet to make a Reds appearance.
Eyebrows were raised at the time of his signing. And it seems as though he may be on his way when the dust settles on the 2020-2021 campaign.
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