Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp said he took an ‘unselfish’ decision by sanctioning the sale of Rhian Brewster to Sheffield United, although the champions negotiated the insurance of a £40 million buy-back clause.
Brewster completed a medical at Bramall Lane ahead of a £23.5 million transfer on Friday.
Klopp was reluctant to let the 20-year-old leave having overseen his development over the last few seasons, but acknowledged it was in the interests of the striker’s career to take the next step and play regular Premier League football.
“Everybody needs to know, all the young boys need to know, that we don’t keep them here at all costs,” said Klopp.
“We do not work to have a solution for one or two games a year. If I am selfish that never helps, to be honest. For a boy like Rhian, we were 100 per cent concerned about his development. This is our boy, and since I’ve been here Rhian was here, but unfortunately he got injured. Sometimes they need to take some steps in their development. Sometimes we are the right place for them to take this development and sometimes we are not. And that is what we have to admit.”
In addition to agreeing the buy-back clause, which will expire after three seasons, Liverpool secured 15 per cent of any future sale of the England youth international.
The transfer represents good business for both clubs given the potential of the player, with Sheffield United desperate for firepower after a tough start to the season.
“Rhian was really seriously injured and first we had to make sure he was ready again for all the demands of professional football and he is,” said Klopp.
“If Rhian would be now 25, 26 I would say, ‘OK, you can stay and work for your chance’. But it is different when you are younger.”