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Official: Can and Flanagan to Depart Liverpool at Contract Expiry

The tenures of Emre Can and Jon Flanagan at Liverpool FC are over.

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Liverpool Training Session - UEFA Champions League Final Previews
“It’s so hard to say goodbye to yesterday.” Emre Can, Boyz II Men fanatic
Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

In transfer news that isn’t really surprising and is probably a lot less exciting than the Nabil Fekir announcement fans have been waiting for, Liverpool FC have released their official list of retained players and among the notable - and expected - names not on that list are midfielder Emre Can and disgraced defender Jon Flanagan.

Emre Can’s long and winding transfer saga is still working its way to a final landing spot that looks to be all but certain in Turin with Juventus. The German international’s departure no doubt will turn some heads what with his eclectic mix of skill, passing range, and athleticism. All of that before even mentioning his finely coiffed head of hair and stunning good looks.

But the ultimate end point in assessing Emre’s Liverpool career will be that it finishes without ever realizing all of that potential. In his time at Liverpool, he looked best suited as a shuttler, but he didn’t quite have the engine to last in Klopp’s system in that role, and sometimes lacked the cool and tactical finesse to sit as the deepest lying midfielder. At 24 years old, Juventus will no doubt think that they may be the ones to solve a problem like Emre, but the progress does seem to have stalled.

Still, considering that when he somehow managed to stitch it all together it did look glorious, he’s certainly worth a punt on a free for them, and he’ll be heading to a league where the pace of play might actually suit him better. Don’t be surprised if you come to this board in the middle of next year and find fans lamenting the loss of Emre - the tantalizing potential of holding a moonbeam in one’s hand made real.

On the other end of the spectrum, the expected allowance of Jon Flanagan’s contract to run down has reached its official point. You may remember that Flanno’s career had more or less been decided following a domestic violence incident earlier this year. The club’s response was tepid - leaning on the presence of Trent Alexander Arnold and Nathaniel Clyne to indicate that Flanno would not be near the first team, without providing any clarity on support it was continuing to give him in light of his own brutal actions. It looked a half measure: condemn strongly, keep him from the first team, but no accountability for what he’s done and no expectation of what work he would need to undertake to reconcile himself to the Liverpool family.

Flanno’s departure, then, is a bit dour for me. The effects of his unacceptable behavior essentially erasing the joy from seeing him rise through the ranks as a homegrown Scouser to a vital cog in that dizzying 2013-2014 league campaign. I hope he’s still doing whatever work was vaguely mentioned he would be doing in order to be better, and that his support system is strong. But I’m also hoping that world football eventually recognizes that second chances usually require a process of reconciliation by which contrition and the active work of rehabilitating one’s self should be the bare minimum for a job as visible and privileged as this.

Rounding out the list of departures are a collection of youth players with perhaps the biggest name being striker Yan Dhanda, being allowed to join Swansea on a free. The entire list can be found here and you can view the club’s official announcement below.

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