When Bobby Duncan left Manchester City for Liverpool last summer it was not because he is the cousin of Steven Gerrard or because the £200,000 fee was too good for City to turn down it was because he felt he felt he would not get first team opportunities at City.
After a season where Duncan scored over 30 goals for the youth teams and helped the U18’s to the FA Youth Cup it now looks like again the forward wishes to move on in search of 1st team football due to the lack of opportunities for first team football but this time at Liverpool.
In all honesty he is not wrong, Liverpool currently have a front line of Bobby Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane, Divock Origi all ahead of him and that is before you count his strike partners at under 23 level Rhian Brewster & Paul Glatzel.
If Liverpool were to lose Duncan they would be losing a player who there is very little doubt that one day he will be playing in the top divisions in Europe, you only have to look at his record in youth level from being first Englishman to score a hat-trick against Brazil to scoring an unbelievable 66 goals in the 2015-16 season for Manchester City and 30 goals with 15 assist last season for Liverpool.
But not only would Liverpool be losing a player who knows where the net is they would also be sending out a message to the rest of Europe’s elite that if you are a young player it is unlikely that you will get a chance in the first team, we have seen examples of how this has affected other clubs none more so than our nearest rivals Manchester City.
In the past couple of seasons they have lost youth talent such as Jadon Sancho, Brahim Diaz, Rony Lopes, David Brooks and of course Bobby Duncan himself who all left Manchester City in search of first team football and Chelsea in the recent past has lost Solanke, Brewster with Hudson Odoi looking likely to move on before getting injured.
The Reds now find themselves in a predicament, do they try and convince Duncan to stay at the club, play his football with the u23’s while training with the first team or maybe they could try to loan him out for the season to a European side to give Duncan that first team experience he so badly craves.
The issue with a loan move however is that currently Liverpool have no player in their squad who spent time out on loan and who has come back to figure in the first team, in fact their most successful loan players last season were Harry Wilson who found himself out on loan again this season and Ryan Kent who is now languishing in the u23 side.
While this may be a new issue for Liverpool it is not a new one for some of the other elite clubs around Europe, take Real Madrid as an example because of their success on the pitch the players in their youth rank find chances limited in the first team, so what did Mardid do?
Real Madrid used the simple solution of agreeing the sale of the player to another European Club as long as the buying club agreed to a buyback clause being inserted into the players contract so if that player was to do well Real Madrid could buy back at a certain figure.
This not only had the advantage of being able to bring the player back to the club if he proves himself elsewhere but also like Madrid had done with Alvaro Moratto and others buy the player back only to sell them straight away at a higher price.
Michael Edwards is no stranger to this route of course adding buy back clauses to Rafa Camacho and Jordan Ibe in the past so if Duncan were to move to Fiorentina on loan with a view to a permanent deal that deal should include a buyback clause so that one day he may return to Anfield.