Sell! To! Buy! Sell! To! Buy! That is the refrain Reds fans have familiarised themselves with over the past months, as it has become clear the club are not willing to take even moderate financial risks in the Covid-19 transfer market. If missing out on an extremely thirsty Timo Werner didn’t make it clear, the fact that Liverpool have spent exactly the amount of money they’ve made this summer — essentially swapping Dejan Lovren for Kostas Tsimikas — should hammer it home.
Luckily, the Merseysiders have a number of fringe players on the first team squad available for those who can put up the dosh, with Harry Wilson and Marko Grujic in particular prime candidates for a move, and Georginio Wijnaldum, Xherdan Shaqiri, Rhian Brewster and Divock Origi in varying states of long-term job insecurity.
It is the latter who is the subject of today’s nonsense courtesy of the Mirror, however, where it is claimed that Liverpool are willing to let Origi go to Turkey on a year-long loan with a compulsory transfer at the end of it, at the exceptionally, suspiciously, reasonable price of £14m. In case it wasn’t already obvious, here’s why that’s not happening.
First of all, while Fenerbahçe is not Beşiktaş — with whom Loris Karius just spent a turbulent two-year loan at the end of which a supposed mandatory purchase was supposed to take place — they are subject to some of the same issues that plague Turkish football teams in general, with financial instability at the top of that list. Given the recent Karius experience — where the player went for months without wages at one point — it is unlikely the Reds will want to dip into that particular market anytime soon, nor that the player would be particularly keen to experience unremunerated work.
Then there’s the issue of the transfer fee. Divock Origi was the subject of an £18m bid from Crystal Palace two years ago, won a Champions League and a Premier League since then, and is about to enter his prime years. Assuming continued inflation, the idea that his price would drop in that time does not hold much water. Not that Fenerbahçe would be likely to pay it, given that it would constitute a club record fee for a club that has passed the £10m threshold twice in its existence, neither of those in the past five years.
The article does — bizarrely offhandedly — mention Newcastle, Aston Villa, Fulham and Brighton as other potential buyers, but with the former two having spent a combined £55m on strikers already, and the latter two looking particularly tentative in the market this summer, we’ll wait until we hear something a lot more concrete before we make any assumptions about the immediate future of Liverpool’s fifth choice striker lying away from the club.