Liverpool are ready to sell Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain this summer with Aston Villa among the leading clubs interested in his transfer, but they have not bought a Reds player since August 2005.
Players leaving Anfield for Villa Park was a somewhat frequent occurrence over the first few seasons of the Premier League-era. Yet after five stars left Merseyside for Birmingham up to the turn of the millennium, only one has made the switch in the 21 years to have followed.
An additional two players in Tiago Ilori in September 2015 and Scott Carson in August 2007 have joined Aston Villa on loan from Liverpool. But the Portuguese’s season-long switch that did not feature any games and ended in January 2016 is the last deal between the two sides.
Aston Villa interested in Oxlade-Chamberlain transfer with Liverpool ready to sell
Aston Villa could make a rare shopping trip to Liverpool this summer, though, as Villans boss Steven Gerrard is interested in buying Oxlade-Chamberlain – who Jurgen Klopp is also ready to sell. That’s according to the Mirror, who report the midfielder is available for circa £10m.
Oxlade-Chamberlain remains a hugely popular presence at Anfield, but enters the final year of his contract this summer. The Reds are loath to let him potentially leave for free in 2023, so are prepared to take a huge hit on the £35m the club paid Arsenal for him in August 2017.
Gerrard could come to his former side’s rescue and now purchase the 28-year-old in efforts to refresh his Villans ranks. The Aston Villa manager is a long-term admirer of his, but faces competition from West Ham with David Moyes looking to add quality and depth, as well.
Aston Villa and West Ham would be frontrunners in any transfer tussle to secure the 35-cap England international’s services. Yet Oxlade-Chamberlain, who is anxious to play regularly in the new campaign, also has suitors from elsewhere in the Premier League and from abroad.
Klopp only handed Oxlade-Chamberlain 17 appearances during the 2021/22 Premier League season, and he also only started in just nine. His last top-flight outing also came on February 19 against Norwich City, before missing eight of their following 13 squads despite being fit.
A lack of opportunities and not having any dialogue with Liverpool over a new contract had already left Oxlade-Chamberlain fearing for his future at Anfield, per the Daily Mail. Now, he could become the first Reds player since 2005 to join Aston Villa in a permanent transfer…
Milan Baros last Liverpool player to join Aston Villa amid Oxlade-Chamberlain interest
Milan Baros presently remains the last Liverpool player to join Aston Villa in a permanent transfer with a £6.5m switch in August 2005, amid Gerrard’s interest in now buying Oxlade-Chamberlain with Klopp ready to sell the versatile England dynamo when the market opens.
The Czech Republic striker had struggled to earn regular minutes at Anfield with 26 Premier League appearances in what would be his final season. Yet his haul of nine goals meant the Villans were keen. But the Birmingham side only witnessed him score eight in 27 in 2005/06.
A slow start to his second season, with one goal in 17 outings, then saw Villa cut their losses. Baros departed Villa Park for Lyon in January 2007 in a swap deal with John Carew, before he returned to England in January 2008 on loan to Portsmouth – where he won the FA Cup.
Pompey’s Wembley triumph was one of 10 titles Baros lifted during his career after the 93-cap international contributed to two Ligue 1 wins with Lyon and a Turkish top-flight title at Galatasaray. He also started in the final as Liverpool won the Champions League in 2004/05.
Steve Staunton sealed second Aston Villa transfer from Liverpool in December 2000
On the eve of the new millennium in December 2000, Steve Staunton left Liverpool to join Aston Villa for the second time. He had previously departed Anfield for Villa Park in August 1991, before the 102-cap Republic of Ireland left-back made the reverse journey in July ‘98.
Liverpool had marked Staunton’s first club in England after joining the Reds from Dundalk in 1986. His time on Merseyside before joining Aston Villa in 1991 also featured winning the FA Cup in 1989 and Division One in 1989/90. He then helped win two EFL Cups with the Villans.
Staunton’s return to Merseyside would see further silverware feature in his trophy cabinet with the 2000/01 UEFA Cup. The European honour was his last major title, but he only had a limited role in the Reds’ triumph after the defender had re-joined Aston Villa in mid-season.
David James saw Liverpool double their money after seven seasons
Liverpool doubled their money on David James when selling the goalkeeper to Aston Villa in June 1999. The shot-stopper had moved to Merseyside from Watford seven years earlier in a £1m deal and played 277 times, before switching red for claret-and-blue in a £1.8m move.
James never featured for a single club more often in his career than during his time with the Reds. His subsequent records at Portsmouth (158), West Ham (102), Manchester City (100) and Bristol City (84) each eclipses the 53-cap England ace’s 83 for the Villans up until 2001.
Aston Villa sold James on to West Ham after two years for £3.5m, despite him being their number one goalkeeper. James had also been the first-choice between the sticks at Anfield during each of his Premier League seasons on Merseyside but for the 1993/94 campaign.
Liverpool broke British record for Stan Collymore before Villa Park switch
Liverpool broke the British transfer record to sign Stan Collymore from Nottingham Forest in 1995 for £8.5m. He snubbed interest from Everton and Newcastle United to move to Anfield after a prolific spell at the City Ground. Yet the striker only lasted two years on Merseyside.
After scoring 22 goals in 37 games for Nottingham Forest, Collymore only managed 35 over his 81 Liverpool games. He then found the net just 12 times across 57 appearances with the Villans after moving to Birmingham in May 1997, in what was a club-record £7.5m transfer.
Collymore would later leave Villa – the club he supported in his youth – for Leicester City in February 2000 following a loan spell with Fulham. Yet his Foxes stay would prove short-lived before joining Bradford that October and Real Oviedo in January 2001 before retiring in July.
Dean Saunders made quick Anfield exit to join the Villans for first Premier League season
Dean Saunders made a quick exit from Liverpool to join Aston Villa for the inaugural Premier League season in 1992. The Wales forward had only moved to Merseyside a year before, but left Anfield for Villa Park despite scoring 25 goals and creating five across 61 appearances.
The 77-cap striker would enjoy a lengthier career in Birmingham with 125 games, 43 goals and seven assists up to 1995. Saunders then left for a brief spell in Turkey with Galatasaray before Nottingham Forest, Sheffield United, Benfica and Bradford up until retiring in 2001.
Never did Saunders amass more appearances for a single club than during his time at Villa Park. His Liverpool record is also second to his Aston Villa haul of games played, and also returned the second-most goals behind only his tally struck in claret-and-blue in the 1990s.
Ray Houghton first Premier League transfer from Liverpool to Aston Villa
Ray Houghton became the first player to seal a transfer from Liverpool to Aston Villa in the Premier League-era with his move in 1992. The Scottish-born Republic of Ireland midfielder had spent the previous five years on Merseyside after joining the Reds from Oxford United.
Houghton enjoyed a successful spell at Anfield with two top-flight titles and two FA Cups. He also helped Aston Villa to win the EFL Cup in 1994, but left the Birmingham side a year later to join Crystal Palace preceding spells with Reading and Stevenage up until retiring in 2000.
Aston Villa have only won the EFL Cup once since Houghton helped to their triumph in 1994 with success in 1996. It remains their last major trophy, with the Villans unsuccessful in their attempts to win the top-flight since a seventh crown in 1980/81 or seventh FA Cup in 1957.