Liverpool have sold Dominic Solanke to Bournemouth for £19million – and he is not the only fringe player the Reds have managed to shift for big money since Jurgen Klopp took charge.
Liverpool invested heavily over the summer as they look to win their first Premier League title, signing Alisson, Naby Keita, Fabinho and Xherdan Shaqiri for around £167million combined.
However, they earned £137million from selling Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona in January 2018 and have kept the coffers topped up with the sale of several fringe players, including the below six for a combined £112.5million in just three years.
Solanke only spent 18 months at Liverpool having joined from Chelsea in the summer of 2017 for an undisclosed fee that took a year to be agreed. Chelsea had originally wanted £10million, with the Reds offering £3million.
The striker made five starts and 16 substitute appearances in his first season at Anfield, scoring once, but he did not make a single appearance in any competition in the first half of 2018-19.
Yet, somehow, after a loan move to Crystal Palace fell through due to concerns over his fitness, Liverpool managed to negotiate a £19million deal to sell him to Bournemouth, sending another fringe player in Nathaniel Clyne to the south coast on loan at the same time.
Smart transfer outgoings:
Christian Benteke £32m
Mamadou Sakho £26m
Danny Ings £20m
Dominic Solanke £19m
Jordon Ibe £15m
Danny Ward £12m
Kevin Stewart £8m
Brad Smith £8m
Michael Edwards. 👏🏻 pic.twitter.com/5vMCLiPYR9
— 🔥🔴David Mcgrady🔥🔴 (@Djmc76) January 5, 2019
The Solanke fee certainly raised some eyebrows, but Liverpool’s negotiators were on even better form when selling Danny Ward to Leicester City in July 2018.
The goalkeeper joined Liverpool as an 18-year-old from Wrexham in January 2012 but made only three appearances in five and a half years at Anfield and fell to fourth choice following the arrival.
Yet despite that and the fact that Leicester were only signing him as back up to Kasper Schmeichel, they agreed to pay £12.5million. He is yet to appear for the Foxes in the Premier League.
Sakho made 80 appearances for Liverpool between 2013 and 2016, but the centre-back was sent home from the pre-season tour of the United States ahead of the 2016-17 season for three cases of indiscipline.
He was subsequently dropped from the first team squad and had not made a single appearance in any competition when he was loaned to Crystal Palace in January 2017.
Thankfully, Sakho impressed enough at Selhurst Park that the Eagles eventually agreed to pay £26million on transfer deadline day that summer as the Reds initially held out for £30million for a player they had absolutely no intention of using.
He is a lot of fun, though.
Unlike the other players on this list, Liverpool actually sold Benteke at a loss, Palace paying a club-record £27million just a year after he had joined the Reds for £32.5million from Aston Villa.
Nevertheless, the deal represented good value for the Merseysiders on a player that didn’t fit into Klopp’s style of play.
The Belgian had been signed by Klopp’s predecessor, Brendan Rodgers, and started Liverpool’s first six Premier League games, but he would go on to make only eight more starts under Klopp before being quickly ushered out of the door in a transfer that included a further £5million in potential add-ons.
If Solanke doesn’t turn out to be a success at Bournemouth, the Cherries might want to stop buying players from Liverpool.
They paid a club-record £15million to sign another young forward from the Reds in Ibe in July 2016, but he has not enjoyed anywhere near as much success at Dean Court as would have been hoped.
Ibe started the first 11 Premier League games of the season, but Eddie Howe publicly called him out for a lack of consistency in November, and the winger started only twice more after that.
He had something of a revival in 2017-18, starting 22 games in the Premier League and scoring his first two goals for the club, but the 23-year-old has fallen back out of favour this campaign, making only three league starts.
Another Rodgers signing, Allen was a relatively popular figure during his four years at Liverpool but was rarely used following the arrival of Klopp, making only eight Premier League starts in 2015-16.
However, his stock was still high enough that Stoke City were willing to pay £13million for him in July 2016.
That represented a £2million loss for Liverpool but was still good business considering he had entered the final 12 months of his contract at Anfield.