Liverpool make a £11 million step in the right direction, but the FSG conundrum remains.
Some people admire Liverpool’s transfer policy, while others despise it.
The player trading concept used by Fenway Sports Group is remarkably similar to the ‘Moneyball’ strategies that FSG CEO John W. Henry valued so much in baseball that he tried several times to hire the man who coined the phrase, Billy Beane, for his Boston Red Sox organization.
However, applying the approach of signing undervalued talent and nurturing it with the goal of making a profit on the pitch or on the bank sheet has divided Reds fans, with some seeing the plan as lacking ambition and denying Jurgen Klopp the opportunity to extend his legacy.
It is, however, the way FSG has committed to functioning, and while Klopp would undoubtedly prefer to have more money to land whom he desires, he did invest in the project when he arrived in 2015.
Marko Grujic, a little-known Serbian midfielder, was his first signing as Reds manager, with the club paying £5.1 million for the player.
After five years at Liverpool, the Serbian has signed a £10.5 million deal with FC Porto, where he has spent the past season on loan.
He spent most of his time as a Liverpool player away from Anfield, with loan spells at Red Star, as well as spells with Cardiff City and Hertha Berlin, before joining Porto on loan last season. His Liverpool career consists of 16 appearances and one goal, with half of those appearances coming in domestic cup and European competition.
Grujic is likely to make Liverpool a £5.4 million profit thanks to his international honors with Serbia and some outstanding performances during his time away from the club. Is a five-year Reds career, though, really a barometer of success?
Another player departing Anfield this summer is Taiwo Awoniyi, who has spent the most of his Reds career away from the club. Despite having joined the club in 2015 for £400,000 from former Wolves midfielder Sey Olofinjana’s Imperial Soccer Academy, the 23-year-old made his first pre-season appearance this summer. “The summary has come to an end.”