Republic of Ireland boss Stephen Kenny feels it is highly likely that goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher will leave Liverpool this summer to gain more game time.
Kelleher, 24, has been with the Reds his entire professional career after coming through the club’s youth system. He made his first-team debut in September 2019 but has had to play second fiddle to Alisson Becker. The Cork-born ace has made just five Premier League appearances and 21 in all competitions.
However, he was between the posts as the Anfield giants beat Chelsea 11-10 on penalties to win the 2021-22 EFL Cup final.
Game time has been limited this term, with only four outings in all competitions and one in the league.
And that is unlikely to change anytime soon, with Alisson the undisputed number one.
Kelleher has earned ten caps for Republic of Ireland to date. But a lack of action is severely denting his chances of staying as the nation’s number one.
Last month, Reds chief Jurgen Klopp stressed that the shot stopper would not be leaving unless the club received an ‘extraordinary offer’.
However, Kenny does not see it that way and expects the talented glove man to leave for pastures new.
“Caoimhin is a very talented goalkeeper,” he told reporters. “It looks like he’ll be on the move this summer and he can only benefit. He needs to play games.
“He’s been starved of games this season, it’s been a problem for him. It’s hard to leave Liverpool, it’s such an iconic club, but he’s not so young now. He’s 24, he needs to play and he knows that.”
Premier League clubs ready to offer Kelleher Anfield exit route
Kelleher is highly rated by all at Liverpool and Klopp is clearly a big fan. But he has yet to prove himself at the top level having warmed the bench for so long.
And it seems as though he will have no shortage of suitors if the north-west giants do green light his exit.
Football Insider recently reported that Tottenham, Brentford and Brighton are keen.
The Spurs link makes sense, with Hugo Lloris tipped to vacate the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this summer.
Brentford’s Daviod Raya has been tipped to replace the Frenchman and Bees chief Thomas Frank has already signed a replacement.
The west Londoners announced the arrival of Netherlands international Mark Flekken on Wednesday.
There are other options still available, however, and Kenny is adamant that the Irishman needs to quit Anfield to further his career.
“He knew that earlier this season and I think he’s been in dialogue with Liverpool about that for a long time,” he added.
“It’s most likely it’ll happen you would think in the summer.
“I would fully expect [him to move]. He’s at the stage where he’s behind one of the best goalkeepers in the world.
“You can’t improve by not playing. He knows that. He’s known that for a while. I think he’s ready to go and play regularly, because he needs to.”