Although they undoubtedly take up the majority of fans’ imagination, incoming transfers aren’t the only moves a football club will make during the off-season. Maintaining a competitive squad also involves culling players who simply won’t get minutes in upcoming years, while maximising potential revenue by moving them on before their contracts run down.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has had a rough go of it at Anfield, and after setting Merseyside alight in his first season with dynamic, match-winning performances, the 27-year old has suffered a series of injuries, and since his ACL tear in Rome nearly three years ago, has only been on the pitch just north of 2,000 minutes for the club.
Of those 2,000 minutes, he’s looked like his old self for maybe 60, and, as was the case with Adam Lallana a few years ago, it appears the injuries have taken enough of a toll on Ox that he simply can’t perform at the level required to compete for Premier and Champions League gold.
That doesn’t mean his career needs to be over, however, and although Liverpool have shown massive faith in the former Arsenal man, handing him a five-year contract back in 2019, when he hadn’t played for nearly a year, they aren’t likely to put up much of a fight if another club comes in with a respectful offer.
Enter West Ham, who are reportedly sniffing around the England international, and who would be able to offer both playing time and an outside chance of competing not only in Europe, but perhaps even the Champions League next year, something that in all likelihood his current club will not.
No transfer fee has been suggested yet, and this could all come to nothing, but with Jürgen Klopp looking to rebuild his midfield for the next half decade in a covid-ravaged financial landscape, any additional revenue will be welcome, and we could be looking at Oxlade-Chamberlain’s last few months in Red.