This summer looks set to be one of Liverpool’s busiest in recent years.
With the club expected to sign a centre-back, central midfielder and a forward, there will be a massive outlay on newcomers.
Hence, there will have to be quite a few departures to raise funds.
With this in mind, we are going to take a look at some of these potential departures and decide what club would be best suited for them to join.
Some players look almost guaranteed to be leaving. Others seem 50/50 at the moment, with fans calling for certain fringe players to be moved on.
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Included in the latter bracket are Joel Matip, Naby Keita and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.
However, all three of these are incredibly useful assets. They are all excellent squad players, with Matip and Keita in particular certainly capable of being regular starters when fit.
We will not be going into detail on these three. However, we will give a short summary at the end of where they should go if they do end up leaving Liverpool.
Nat Phillips – Crystal Palace
From a defensive aspect, he has hardly put a foot wrong.
But he is clearly limited and, with Ibrahima Konate and Ozan Kabak likely signing permanent deals with the Reds this summer, it looks clear that Phillips will be on his way.
He would do a fine job for any manager that does not have ball-playing ability as his No 1 priority with his centre-backs.
If it weren’t for his connections to Bolton, Burnley would have been the obvious option here.
Instead, Crystal Palace may be the perfect home, especially if Roy Hodgson stays another season.
The deep block would suit him perfectly, while the likes of Gary Cahill, Scott Dann and James Tomkins are all approaching the end of their Selhurst Park careers.
Ben Davies – Celtic
Ben Davies could hardly believe his luck when he was plucked out of Preston by the Premier League champions back in January.
Unfortunately, it may have been too good to be true, as Davies will likely leave the club without ever playing a game for them.
Maybe this is just a settling-in period and the 25-year-old will be a part of the squad next season.
But, as mentioned, two centre-backs are likely to come in this summer so surely Davies will be moved on for a small profit.
The side he was originally set to sign for in January, Celtic, is probably the best home for him.
Davies is better than Championship level, but Jurgen Klopp clearly feels that he is not at Premier League level either. So a historically huge club in Scotland makes sense.
The Bhoys will be on the lookout for a new centre-back with Shane Duffy flopping. Davies’s ball-playing ability may make him the perfect fit to rival Kristoffer Ajer and Christopher Julien.
Gini Wijnaldum – PSG
Another week has passed without any news of Gini Wijnaldum signing a new deal at Liverpool.
It is probably safe to assume that he will be off this summer.
Yes, it will probably be to Barcelona, but we actually feel that PSG is a better fit.
While Barca could do with an influx of experience and winning mentality in midfield, they have Pedri, Riqui Puig and Ilaix Moriba breaking through in the No 8 role.
All three look like potential superstars, so having Wijnaldum taking up their minutes is not a great idea.
PSG meanwhile really only have Marco Veratti as a midfield megastar.
While Idrissa Gueye, Leandro Paredes, Danilo Pereira and Ander Herrera have their purposes, none of them offer much outside of defensive work.
Wijnaldum would bring that work rate, but also quality in the final third IF he is let off the reigns to do so. He also brings some star power, which PSG’s marketing committee will love.
Signing players over 30 on big-money contracts is never really a great idea, but PSG have the funds to be able to do so.
Marko Grujic – Porto
After a difficult start to life in Portugal, Marko Grujc has become a big fan favourite for Porto.
It has taken until the last months of the season for him to become a regular starter, but he is in great form at the moment.
In fact, one Porto Twitter fan page made a very tongue-in-cheek joke directed at the Reds where they sarcastically suggested that Grujic was a bad player and that he could stay in Portugal with them rather than returning to Anfield.
The Serbian may not be a bad option to offer midfield competition for Liverpool, but if they could get £15m-£25m for him then they should certainly sell.
A return to Germany may not be a bad option, nor would the likes of Wolves in the Premier League.
However, he now looks settled at the Estadio Do Dragao so they may decide to keep him.
Harry Wilson – Newcastle
Harry Wilson probably added a couple of million pounds to his transfer valuation with an excellent hat-trick for Cardiff last weekend.
The Welshman has been having a great season on loan in the Championship and is clearly too good for that level.
He is joint-second in the division for assists, despite playing a team well outside the play-off spots.
The issue is the majority of his goals and assists come from set-pieces, which could turn certain stats-driven clubs off him.
Newcastle are the type of club that would overlook his open-play deficiencies, so that might be the perfect home for him.
If not, perhaps Celtic or Rangers could make a star of him, while a unique move to a mid-table side in Spain or Italy could also make sense.
Xherdan Shaqiri – AC Milan
Xherdan Shaqiri is a more-than-capable squad player for Liverpool.
He is possibly the best attacker in the squad at picking locks in defences. He offers something different to basically anyone else at the club.
However, he is never going to be a regular in the side, so the player himself will probably demand a move this summer.
The Swiss just seems to have Serie A written all over him for some reason.
He is probably at the level of Lazio or Roma, but neither of those sides play with a right-winger or a No 10, so it is hard to see where he would fit in in Rome.
Despite previously turning out for Inter, it may be at cross-city rivals AC Milan that Shaqiri is best-suited to joining.
Their main creative force this season has been Hakan Calhanoglu, but he may be on the way out this summer.
The Turk plays either in the hole or off the right, so the San Siro side will have space for a Shaqiri-type player.
Yes, they should be targeting someone younger, but Shaqiri will come relatively cheap and would be a good rotation option for a few seasons.
Divock Origi – Nice
This is possibly the most difficult of all.
Origi is the definition of a Liverpool cult hero. The memories he has given the fans must never be forgotten.
Honestly, he is probably as good a player as you can hope for to be your seventh-choice forward. Yet some still want him out, and it looks like he could well be on his way at the end of the season.
We do not really know exactly how good the Belgian is as he has played so little football. He has talent, but if teams are looking for a striker, there are much smarter and safer options out there.
Maybe a return to France would suit him best.
Nice have a promising young squad, so Origi could go there and offer some experience at least.
Perhaps he becomes a 20-goal-a-season striker in Ligue 1, but it is hard to see.
Other potential departures
If Joel Matip does leave Liverpool, it should be for a top club. He is world-class when fit, so Barcelona may not be a bad home for him.
They need to sign more than one centre-back this summer, so Matip would be a good experienced option.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain needs a club that plays 4-3-3. His best position is as a No 8 and, frankly, it is nearly a waste of time playing him anywhere else.
There are actually very few clubs that play that system in the Premier League. A rogue shout would be Sevilla, who have an ageing midfield in need of new energy.
Much like Matip, Naby Keita is a top player when he is fit. Teams would be put off signing him due to his unavailability.
A return to Germany with old club RB Leipzig would world, as would a move to Borussia Dortmund.
Hopefully, these three will not join the list of departures this summer. But if Liverpool do need the funds, then it is possible that they leave the club.