Roberto Firmino #10 of Al-Ahli Saudi FC in action during their Match Day 7 of the SAFF Roshn Saudi Pro League 2023-24 against Al-Nassr SFC at the King Fahd International Stadium on September 14, 2023

The 10 players let go by Liverpool in the summer – & how they’ve fared since

Liverpool underwent a rather major squad overhaul this summer in order to rejoin the Premier League title battle, but did so at the expense of several key figures.

Jurgen Klopp’s side now boasts a much more rejuvenated look, notably in midfield, where Dominik Szoboszlai and Alexis Mac Allister have made instant impacts and Wataru Endo and Ryan Gravenberch are creating competition for places.

We’ve taken a look at the 10 players that Liverpool let go in the summer and checked out how they’ve fared since. Note: we’ve only included players that made a first-team appearance for the Reds.

Naby Keita

Keita endured an injury-plagued time in Merseyside after joining from RB Leipzig in 2018, failing to make any sustained impact in five years despite commanding a £52.75million fee.

After being released in the summer, the midfielder returned to the Bundesliga and joined Werder Bremen on a free transfer.

“I think having only one game a week will help me,” he said. “The workload isn’t as high here as in England. Hopefully, I can play to my best every week and help us be successful.”

But the 28-year-old picked up another injury problem in pre-season and has made just two substitute appearances for his new club.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain

Oxlade-Chamberlain left behind England this summer in order to fulfil his prophecy and play in the Turkish Super Lig with Besiktas. He’s doing alright.

Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates his first Besiktas goal (credit @beINSPORTS_TR Twitter)

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James Milner

A somewhat surprising deal saw Milner leave Liverpool after eight glorious years at the club, despite still being one of Klopp’s most prized assets.

“It would have been nice to win the Europa League final,” he said after reflecting on his time at Anfield. “We didn’t quite get over the line. Other than that, no [regrets].

“That’s why I’m content on leaving this place, which isn’t easy. I think it’s probably very sad leaving here if you feel as if you’ve missed out or not achieved what you wanted.”

He headed down south to join Brighton upon the expiry of his contract and has slotted rather seamlessly into Roberto De Zerbi’s setup as the veteran.

The 37-year-old appeared in all of the Seagulls’ first five Premier League games in 2023/24 but has missed the last two through injury.

He also started against AEK Athens in the Europa League and became the first player to play in a major European competition for five different English teams.

Roberto Firmino

After falling down the pecking order in 2022-23, Firmino turned down Liverpool’s offer of a new contract and bid an emotional farewell to the club.

He then completed a free transfer to Saudi Pro League side Al Ahli, who also signed Edouard Mendy, Roger Ibanez, Merih Demiral, Gabri Veiga, Riyad Mahrez and Allan Saint-Maximin in the summer.

The Brazil international was handed the captain’s armband on his arrival and enjoyed a dream debut, netting a hat-trick in a 3-1 win over Al-Hazem.

But he’s since gone seven games without a goal and was teased by former Liverpool teammate Sadio Mane during a 4-3 defeat against Al-Nassr.


Once regarded as the best defensive midfielder in the world, Fabinho looked a shadow of his former self during a difficult 2022/23 season.

Liverpool decided to cash in on the Brazil international in the summer, selling him to reigning Saudi Pro League champions Al-Ittihad in a £42million deal.

After making an impressive debut in their 3-0 win over Al Raed, he was bizarrely presented with a Rolex by an enthusiastic journalist.

The 29-year-old has already established himself as a key player for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side, playing the full 90 minutes in all but one of their opening 10 games in 2023/24.

Jordan Henderson

Henderson also left Merseyside to move to Saudi Arabia as the 33-year-old completed a controversial move to Al-Ettifaq, who are managed by Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard.

He told The Athletic: “If one of those people [at Liverpool] said to me, ‘Now we want you to stay’, then we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

“Now, that’s not to say that they forced me out of the club or they were saying they wanted me to leave but at no point did I feel wanted by the club or anyone to stay.”

The midfielder – who is reportedly being paid £700,000-per-week – captains Gerrard’s side and has registered five assists in his first nine appearances in all competitions.

Jack Bearne

One of four Liverpool academy graduates on this list, Bearne made his one and only senior appearance for the club in a 5-0 defeat to Aston Villa in the League Cup.

After spending last season on loan at National League North side Kidderminster Harriers, he was released by the Reds in the summer.

The 22-year-old winger signed a two-year deal with Scottish Championship club Greenock Morton and registered an assist on his league debut.

But he has started just two games in all competitions and has mainly been restricted to cameo appearances from the bench.

Leighton Clarkson

Alongside Bearne, Clarkson also made his debut against Villa in 2019, but he also made an appearance in the FA Cup and the Champions League.

The midfielder had loan spells at Blackburn Rovers and Aberdeen before joining the latter on a permanent deal in the summer.

He’s already made 13 appearances in all competitions in 2023/24, including starts in two UEFA Europa Conference League group-stage games,

The 21-year-old recently registered an assist in their 3-1 win over Rangers at Ibrox and earned himself a place in Sky Sports’ Scottish Premiership Team of the Week.

Layton Stewart

After recovering from an anterior cruciate injury, Stewart made his Liverpool debut against Derby County in the League Cup in November 2022.

But that proved to be his one and only appearance for his boyhood club, and he joined Preston North End for an undisclosed fee.

The 21-year-old striker has made just two substitute appearances this season as manager Ryan Lowe tries to get him fully prepared for life as a Championship player.

“He played a few minutes in pre-season and Layton is a development player, who has got fantastic talent and ability,” Lowe said. “Over the course of pre-season, he found things difficult and that’s because if you look at him, he is not physically strong enough.

“He’s got to build himself up and that’s our plan with Layton, to build him up for the next three to four weeks and make sure he’s robust.”

Max Woltman

Woltman rose through the ranks at Liverpool and made two first-team appearances in 2021-22, coming off the bench in a 2-1 win over AC Milan in the Champions League before starting an FA Cup match against Shrewsbury Town.

The forward spent the second half of last season on loan at League Two side Doncaster Rovers but failed to score in 15 appearances.

He then joined Oxford United for an undisclosed fee after impressing on trial at the League One side in the summer.

While the 19-year-old has made two appearances in the EFL Trophy this season, he’s yet to appear in League One.

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