Marko Grujic has explained how his father was very skeptical of him joining Liverpool back in 2016.
The Serbian was Jurgen Klopp’s first permanent transfer, although he did bring Steven Caulker on loan during his first January at the club!
Grujic says that his dad thought he’d struggle for game-time and that an Anfield switch may be too soon. In hindsight, considering the midfielder has played only 14 games under Klopp’s guidance and hardly any from the start, he may have been right.
“The newspapers made the story a little bit bigger,” Grujic told ESPN’s Glenn Price. “It wasn’t really like that. My dad was a little bit scared of the size of the club because Liverpool were rocking and Klopp was playing a really intense game. He just said: ‘You’ve just played 20 games in the Serbian SuperLiga, I’m not sure you’re ready for that step, to jump into Liverpool.’
“He was a bit paranoid. But then we made a deal together and we are both saying it was good decision.
“I’ve seen some other guys from England — [Jadon] Sancho, for example — come here [to Germany]. From the intensity of the game, I think the similarities are very close to the Premier League.
“The Premier League has a bit more quality and the clubs spend more for their players. It’s more money in England. But the Bundesliga is perfect for young players to get some experiences, get some games.”
Grujic is enjoying a productive loan spell at Hertha Berlin this term – and he’s actually only lost one Bundesliga match in which he’s played.
His manager Pal Dardai is using him as a no.6 instead of a roaming no.8 and it seems to be getting the best out of him.
At 22, there’s still time for Grujic to develop into an elite operator – but we don’t know if that’ll be with Liverpool.
The key with Grujic is for him to simply stay fit and play consistent minutes. We’d suggest another loan spell next term may help, as a year on our bench behind Fabinho or Jordan Henderson will simply not be beneficial.