Nathaniel Phillips revealed that he came extremely close to making a switch to Swansea City last year, with his bags already packed to leave.
The move ultimately fell through, however, with Liverpool benefitting from the 24-year-old’s availability in the second-half of the season, with the likes of Joel Matip and Fabinho adding to the injury list.
“My bags were packed. My bags were packed and in the car,” the Bolton-born defender said in an interview with the Echo.
“That day training at Liverpool, I dropped out early. All the staff knew that the move was meant to happen.
“I think it would have been a permanent move and they wanted to protect me, they didn’t want me to get injured in training.
“It didn’t feel like it wouldn’t happen. It seemed almost done but as the day went on, I just thought, ‘Oh right, maybe this isn’t going to go the way we all imagined this morning’.
“Come the evening, once my bags were packed, I wasn’t going to move back in with my parents again because I’d just come back from Germany so I went and got a flat and that was the process of me moving out of home again.”
The Englishman was a reliable performer for Jurgen Klopp’s men, helping his side achieve Champions League qualification with a remarkable 26 points secured from the final 30.
All things considered, it was rather lucky that the move didn’t come to fruition, with our remaining centre-back options not looking particularly appetising.
Certainly, it gave Klopp the confidence to keep Fabinho in midfield, where his absence at times this term had been duly noted.
While we’d expect Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez to remain ahead of Phillips in the pecking order, once they’re cleared to make a return to the playing field, we’d love to see him be kept on as a backup option.