‘I don’t know yet…’ – Liverpool defender suggests he could cut Anfield ties this summer

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Just over four years on from his last senior appearance for the club, Sepp van den Berg has admitted that he may consider leaving Liverpool permanently in the summer if he struggles to get a look-in at Anfield.

The Dutch defender is currently on loan at Mainz, his third temporary stint away from the Reds since February 2021, and his contract at his parent club runs to the summer of 2016.

However, the 22-year-old told Voetbal Nieuws (via Liverpool Echo) that he now wants to be settled, and if that means cutting the cord with LFC if he’s unable to forge his way into the next manager’s plans, so be it.

Van den Berg said: “If I go back to Liverpool, they might want me to stay. If I see that I won’t get much game time, then I might choose to leave. It’s really important to me that I play.

“In previous years, I didn’t feel like I would be starting next to Virgil [van Dijk]. I don’t know yet what my chances will be like next summer. I think I’m doing well. I can handle playing at Liverpool. I can compete, but being a starter is different. Virgil and [Ibrahima] Konate are not easy to [displace]. I know it will be hard.”

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There may be an opening at centre-back in Liverpool’s squad for next season if Joel Matip’s contract isn’t renewed beyond its summer expiry, but even at that, Van den Berg would likely be fifth in the queue for a starting berth behind Van Dijk, Konate, Joe Gomez and Jarell Quansah.

The Dutchman has at least been one of the few on-loan Reds players to enjoy regular game-time this season, with 19 Bundesliga starts among his 23 senior appearances for Mainz (Transfermarkt).

He’s doing everything in his power to forge his way into the LFC first-team picture on a fixed basis, but whether Jurgen Klopp’s successor will view him as an integral presence at Anfield remains the big unknown.

At 22 and having been a consistent starter in one of Europe’s biggest leagues, it’s understandable that Van den Berg won’t want to take a backwards step and be left on the fringes at Liverpool next term.

He could have a massive decision to make in the summer, although there are plenty of external factors to be resolved also which might yet make or break his future with the Reds.

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