Liverpool on Friday confirmed that Germany midfielder Emre Can and England defender Jon Flanagan will be leaving the club in the summer upon the expiry of their respective contracts.
Talks with Can had stalled midway into last season itself, with the 24-year-old Can keen on a switch to Serie A giants Juventus.
With the Reds’ confirmation, it seems that Can’s switch to the Biancorneri is now a mere formality and the deal should be done within the next week.
Since he’s joining them on a free transfer, the German is likely to receive a massive signing fee, along with a considerable spike in his current wages.
After arriving at Anfield from Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen in 2014, Can quickly established himself as a regular under then manager Brendan Rodgers.
Jurgen Klopp replaced Rodgers midway into Can’s debut season and the German tactician preserved his compatriot’s status as a key player of the squad.
A versatile player, Can initially played mostly at right-back but then gradually switched to his preferred position of central midfield as Liverpool emerged as one of the most exciting teams in the Premier League.
With over 150 appearances for the Reds, it’s safe to say he paid back his €12 million transfer fee, but the fact that he departs at a relatively young age might prove to be a source of frustration for the Liverpool faithful.
Considering a footballer peaks at around 27, Can’s best years are ahead of him and he’s likely to spend them in Turin, not Anfield.
For Jon Flanagan, Liverpool Academy graduate, the picture is not so rosy as the 25-year-old doesn’t have European heavyweights jostling for his signature.
After making his first-team debut in 2011, the 5’11 fullback flitted in and out of the senior squad before eventually becoming a regular for the 2013-14 season.
With Glen Johnson not the player he once was, Brendan Rodgers started to pick the younger option at right-back but disaster struck before the next season started as the club revealed that he had undergone knee surgery.
Things were never the same for Flanagan after the operation as he struggled to get back into the side and with the emergence of players like Joe Gomez and Trent Alexander-Arnold, he was deemed surplus to requirements at Anfield.
He spent the past season on loan in the Championship with Bolton Wanderers and it looks likely he will be join a side in the second tier.
Scottish giants Rangers, managed by Flanagan’s former teammate and Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard, are reportedly interested in his services but right now it is pure speculation.