The last few seasons have not been kind to Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. A serious knee injury at the end of his first season at Liverpool was disastrous for the midfielder as he was never able to regain the superb form he’d found pre-injury. Since then, his Liverpool tenure has been marked by nagging injuries and inconsistent playing time even when healthy.
For well over a year now, it’s looked like his career at Anfield was nearing an end. With his contract set to expire this summer, it’s almost universally accepted that he’ll be moving on at the end of this season.
Apparently, the Saints have had their eye on bringing the 29-year-old, who graduated from the Southampton academy, back to the south coast for some time now. Liverpool had previously resisted attempts to coax Ox with a loan deal. However, with it clear he won’t be part of the upcoming midfield overhaul, it makes sense the Reds would be willing to let him go at this point.
While there’s little to go on from the LFC side here to confirm this is a real possibility, it’s not hard to imagine it happening anyway. Oxlade-Chamberlain has struggled to get playing time even when midfield options are quite thin, so his departure may even be sanctioned independent of plans to bring in midfield reinforcements in January. Getting even a small fee for a player who is not in their plans and not likely to play much in any scenario is probably the right call.
And, as far as destinations go, it’s hard to think of one that makes more sense than Southampton. Ox’s first two professional seasons and his entire youth career were spent with the Saints, and it’s exactly the kind of move you’d expect for a player looking to squeeze a few more years of football in before hanging up their boots.
It really just makes sense for all parties involved, so hopefully, they can get a deal done if that’s really what everyone desires.