For Liverpool, desperately in need of reinforcements at centre half, a £1.5M loan deal with an £18M purchase option to get a first hand look at Ozan Kabak, a player they’ve been watching for some time, seems like fantastic business.
For struggling, relegation-threatened Schalke, the club that loaned the Reds the 20-year-old Turkish international, it seems potentially less ideal. Sporting Director Jochen Schneider, though, insists it’s a move that sees Schalke come out ahead.
“We would not have let Ozan go if we had not brought in Shkodran [Mustafi],” he told Bild. “The corona crisis has hit the club extremely hard and we have an obligation to act with farsightedness. That was why these transfers came about.”
Schalke are dead last in the Bundesliga and relegation seems certain, and with the club also struggling financially, even coming out slightly ahead financially over the next six months by swapping Kabak for Mustafi might be seen as worth it.
Further, continuing to play for a seemingly certain to be relegated side, the worst defensive outfit in Germany, wasn’t going to improve Kabak’s value to anybody over the next six months—while a chance to play for Liverpool at least might.
Or at least that’s the case if Kabak has a solid but unspectacular loan spell and the Reds return him to his parent club in the summer. If he excels and the Reds then snap him up for £18M, Schalke and Schneider could be left looking foolish.