Takumi Minamino’s time in England is expected to come to an end this summer with Ligue 1 side Monaco favourites to sign the £17M-rated Japanese international two-and-a-half seasons after he joined Liverpool from RB Salzburg.
While Minamino was key to Liverpool’s two cup runs this past season, it’s probably fair to say things didn’t quite go as the player would have hoped, with minutes often hard to come by and a disappointing six months spent on loan at Southampton.
“I’ve never spent this much time on the bench as a player,” Minamino reflected. “It was difficult to maintain my conditioning and deal with my feelings about that, so in the end it was a season that was disappointing but fulfilling.
“I want to do my best to be a player who can produce results in important games. I was trying to inspire myself to prove my worth. I did extra personal training a lot and tried to find motivation in the regret and anger from not playing.”
Minamino’s move to Anfield was always something of a gamble for player and club, a £7.25M release clause bargain and the hope that his promising underlying statistics would translate from the Austrian Bundesliga to the Premier League.
They never quite did, but his contributions in the FA Cup and League Cup this past season can’t be overlooked, and hopefully wherever he ends up next—be it Monaco or elsewhere—he will be a better player for his time spent in England.