Ben Davies will always go down as one of the most improbable, and most peculiar, signings of the Jürgen Klopp era.
Obviously, it’s easy to see why they signed the former Preston defender in the winter of January 2021. Liverpool were in the midst of a massive crisis in central defence, with Virgil van Dijk, Joël Matip and Joe Gomez all out injured for the season.
“We see the potential really,” said Klopp at the time of the signing. “We see the quality and we see the potential as well because he’s 25 and there’s a lot to come for him.
“I know for him it’s an opportunity and I see it exactly the same for us, that it’s a really good thing to do. The fact that he said yes shows he is confident. That’s exactly what we need. It can be a wonderful story and it’s all about Ben and me to make sure this story will be really great.”
Davies arrived with Turkish defender Ozan Kabak, and while Kabak got some game time in the back end of the 2020/21 season, Davies never kicked a ball for Liverpool, even in 2021/22.
Towards the end of the summer transfer window, he was loaned out to Sheffield United on a season-long loan deal. Davies played 22 times for The Blades, scoring once, the winner against Blackburn in late February.
However, with United failing to win promotion back to the Premier League, Davies was returned to sender. With little prospect of him playing for Liverpool’s first team, it was just a matter of time before he was either sold or sent on another loan deal again.
But it seems Davies could be leaving Liverpool for good. Reports suggest that Celtic and Middlesbrough have contacted the club to ask for information on Davies.
No offers have come Liverpool’s way as of yet, but one would expect that for a 26-year-old defender with Championship experience, Liverpool hope to get around £4m for his signature.
This would represent a massive profit for the club, considering Liverpool paid an initial fee of only half a million, plus they reportedly received £500k already from Sheffield United for his loan deal last season.
The upside is that, even though Davies ’ time at Anfield will no doubt be tinged with regret at not having made a single appearance, he got to train with some of the very best in the world for a prolonged period of time.
For Liverpool, the experiment didn’t work out, but in the end the club could make a profit on a player who didn’t kick a ball in a red shirt. Given the profit they will make, it is time history was rewritten on a ‘failed’ transfer.