Domino effect puts Liverpool star close to exit but second, £12m star throws spanner in works

Rhys Williams, Nat Phillips, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Andrew Robertson and JamesMilner celebrating a Liverpool goal, May 2021

Liverpool defender Rhys Williams is closing in on a move to Swansea for the rest of the season as a result of the Reds’ refresh at the back, a report claims.

The 20-year-old has largely remained on the periphery of Liverpol’s first team, despite last season’s breakthrough. In fact, he became a crucial player for Jurgen Klopp amid his side’s injury crisis. Virgil van Dijk, Joel Matip and Joe Gomez all suffered long-term injuries, forcing Williams into contention.

He subsequently made 19 first-team appearances, including nine in the Premier League and six in the Champions League.

However, his situation has now changed and he is playing Under-23s football again. Meanwhile, Van Dijk and Matip have re-formed their partnership and Gomez has started on the bench.

What’s more, new centre-back signing Ibrahima Konate has joined him. As such, Williams’ chances of minutes look slim.

According to the Liverpool Echo, the centre-back is close to moving to South Wales for the rest of the season. Liverpool must first green-light the move, but they will not stand in his way.

Indeed, the Reds feel that the transfer will prove beneficial to Williams.

The Championship switch comes as a similar one to which Harvey Elliott signed up to last season.

Rhys Williams, Liverpool defender

The 18-year-old midfielder was at Blackburn and he impressed, earning a nomination for the second tier’s Young Player of the Year award.

As such, he has gone straight into Klopp’s first team this term.

Nathaniel Phillips Liverpool transfer possible

Nat Phillips, Rhys Williams Burnley v Liverpool May 2021

While Liverpool will not stand in Williams’ way, they are yet to sanction his exit because of uncertainty over Nathaniel Phillips’ future.

Like Williams, he benefitted from Liverpool’s injury crisis. Unlike his colleague, though, he has been earmarked for a permanent exit rather than a loan.

Liverpool are expecting to receive a ‘number of offers’ for the 24-year-old before Tuesday’s 11pm transfer deadline.

What’s more, Goal journalist Neil Jones says that he has interest from England, as well as Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands.

However, his £12million asking price has so far proven ‘prohibitive’. As a result, Liverpool will not sanction Williams’ exit until they get clarity on Phillips’ situation.

Jones also says that youngster Jake Cain will move to Newport on loan. However, Loris Karius and Sheyi Ojo will – as it stands – be staying at Anfield.