It’s hard to believe Harry Wilson’s most recent appearance for Liverpool against Arsenal in the Carabao Cup back in September was his first bout under Jurgen Klopp since January 2017.
Well, that was a decision that was largely impacted due to expected departure of Xherdan Shaqiri which initially felt as if it could present Wilson with a late lifeline to make his impact at Anfield.
Following the penalty shoot-out defeat to Arsenal, which also saw Wilson as the unfortunate victim to miss the decisive spot-kick, the Wales international was subsequently left out in the cold and his future prospects did not look promising.
He made a loan switch to Cardiff City on transfer deadline day and last night he put in another impressive performance in the Championship against Barnsley.
Wilson was selected to feature on the right-side of midfield, at the expense of fellow Liverpool loanee Sheyi Ojo.
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Speaking earlier in the week, Cardiff manager Neil Harris told The Wales Online: “I enjoy seeing him every day in training and he’s a real breath of fresh air within the group as well, personality-wise and will just go from strength to strength.”
Wilson did exactly what he was asked to do, and more, providing an assist and a goal in a near-perfect display as The Bluebirds ran out 3-0 winners.
He completed 72 per cent of his passes, scored with his only shot on target while making one key pass, one tackle and one interception.
While it was his attacking play that shone, his defensive work for his team helped Cardiff keep a clean sheet which was just as valuable.
Great win tonight rounded off with a goal🙌🏼⚽️ https://t.co/JMGaau9uMH
— harry wilson (@harrywilson_) November 3, 2020
Liverpool made a smart decision
If Wilson had stayed at Liverpool, he would have been sat on the bench despite his versatility to play in numerous positions.
Perhaps next year, this won’t be the case. Wilson needs this season to boost his confidence, fitness and consistency which is something that Liverpool just cannot offer him at this moment in time.
His attacking quality has the potential to rival that of a few Liverpool fringe players including Takumi Minamino, Divock Origi and Shaqiri.
The biggest problem for Wilson is that in the last three seasons at Liverpool, the club’s attacking triumvirate has remained the same and largely unthreatened. This is something that looks set to change next year.
New signing Diogo Jota has hit the ground running at Anfield and has showcased the first real signs of the dynamic regarding Liverpool’s forward system finally beginning to change.
It would have been easy for Liverpool to cash in on a moderately low fee for Wilson in the summer where sales were hard to come by.
Instead, Liverpool smartly only permitted a loan deal, with no purchase clause.
Wilson is still only 23, and the performance last night alone showcased that selling him prematurely may have been a big error.
Liverpool are in control of his future, with his current deal at Anfield running until 2023.
This loan among others, is beginning to look like a masterstroke, because at this rate, Liverpool will get back a stronger, better player for next season and beyond.
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