Manchester United’s 4-1 victory over Chelsea last night ended any hopes Liverpool had of overtaking them on the final day of the Premier League season and securing a top four finish next season.
The Reds have missed out on the chance to play Champion League football next season and will instead have to settle for a place in the UEFA Europa League. With a fifth place finish now confirmed, Jurgen Klopp can see out this weekend’s match and turn his focus entirely to recruiting reinforcements for next season as they look to get back to challenging at the top end of the table.
It won’t just be about players coming in at Anfield though as there are likely to be plenty of exits with Roberto Firmino, Naby Keita, James Milner and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain all already confirmed as leaving the Merseyside club. Now, another player has seemingly dropped a hint that he could be set for a permanent exit from the Merseyside club while reports are beginning to circulate which support the theory.
Leighton Clarkson, who has been hugely impressive for Aberdeen during his loan spell in the Scottish Premiership this season, has sent a message to supporters via the Dons’ official social media channels. The 21-year old, who has only made three senior appearances for the Reds since coming through their youth academy, scored the first goal for his loan club with a sublime free kick in their 3-0 home win over St Mirren on Wednesday.
That victory ensured a third place finish for Aberdeen which means they will be playing European football next season, potentially even against Liverpool in the Europa League depending on the outcome of the Scottish Cup final which will determine which competition they enter. Clarkson was on selfie cam after the match as the Pittodrie crowd applauded his and his teammate’s efforts and simply said: “Thank you for your support this season, it’s been incredible, I’ll see you in Europe.”
That could mean that the England youth international is set to secure a permanent move to Aberdeen if Liverpool are willing to sell this summer as he enters the final year of his contract. The Evening Express have reported that the Dons are ‘closing in on a deal ‘to bring Clarkson back to Pittodrie from Liverpool next season although it is unclear yet if that will be on a permanent basis or another loan move.