Republic of Ireland manager Stephen Kenny has revealed that Liverpool pulled the plug on plans to send Caoimhin Kelleher out on loan this summer.
Kelleher came through the academy ranks at Liverpool, but has so far only made four senior appearances for them. All those games were in either the FA Cup or EFL Cup.
The goalkeeper will turn 22 this month, so is at an age where he needs to get gametime in order to develop.
However, he is unlikely to find it at Liverpool, who have one of the best keepers in the world in Alisson Becker as their first choice.
Jurgen Klopp has also stuck with Adrian as his deputy, despite the Spaniard coming under criticism recently.
Therefore, Kelleher will have to look elsewhere if he wants to play. And now his international manager has confirmed that he was in line for a loan exit from Anfield before Alisson picked up an injury earlier this season.
Kenny has called up Kelleher to the Ireland squad for the international break – which includes a game against England at Wembley – despite him never having played a league game.
However, the Ireland coach thinks the Liverpool prospect is good enough – but told him that he needs to find regular gametime.
“We really need Caoimhin Kelleher to get matches under his belt because he is ready to play for us now, we feel,” he said.
“He is good enough to play for Ireland. But he is not playing matches so it is an issue.”
Kenny confirms missed chance for loan
Kenny continued: “He was supposed to go on loan to Holland in the last window but when the first choice got injured at Liverpool, that move was pulled.
“He wants to go on loan, he was ready to play and we feel we would have benefitted from that.”
Kelleher has a contract at Liverpool until 2022, by which time he will be 23 years old. He has been at the club since 2015.