The clearout continues. The Echo is reporting that young Brad Smith has left the first team squad in California to finalize a £6m move to return shoppers, Bournemouth. Smith has allegedly already agreed to personal terms with the coastal club and will arrive at Vitality Stadium for a medical as early as Tuesday.
After some impressive preseason performances, fans of the marauding young full back will be encouraged by the inclusion of a buyback clause in the deal, sensibly ensuring that either the Liverpool coffers or the first team will reap the benefits of any future increase in value.
Back at Anfield, with Alberto Moreno now the only remaining left back in the squad, the smart money will be on Jurgen Klopp moving to recruit backup and/or competition for the much-maligned Spaniard before the window closes on August 31.
Either way, the whole affair is another smashing piece of business for the club and further evidence of the impact Klopp has had on transfer policy in his short time at the reins. From a purely numbers perspective, the combined sales of Jordan Ibe also to Bournemouth, Sergi Canos, Jerome Sinclair, Jordan Rossiter and now Smith have netted the club a few quid shy of £30m for players with little chance of regularly showing for the first team any time in the near future.
Of especial note, however, has been the business savvy and respect for the academy’s work that has marked the club’s approach to youth. Buyback, sell-on and minimum playing time clauses are starting to feature in moves away, serving to further highlight the naivete with which young talent had been handled prior.
Of course, not every academy product will become good enough to require invoking a buyback clause, but this same academy has produced Gerrards and Sterlings in the past, and the stars of tomorrow have to come from somewhere.
All this is to say is that the running score is that Klopp has brought in £60m worth of starters, while somehow earning back £40m for players holding up the bench. As the other big clubs spend the summer running around buying names, the big German is building a squad. Even the neutral has to be excited at the challenge this team looks set to make this season.