“I wanted to” — the Southampton defender told how close he was to moving to Liverpool

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Before the trip to Anfield in the Premier League, Southampton central defender Dukh Kaleta-Kar told how close he was to moving to Liverpool in 2021.

In recent weeks, Kaleta-Kar has become a regular player in the starting line-up of Southampton, and on Saturday he can play for the club for the eighth time.

It will be against the team he almost joined at the end of the off-season in the 2020/21 season, as Liverpool explored all options to solve the injury crisis.

In the end, deals were made to attract Ozan Kabak and Ben Davis, but such candidates as David Carmo, Gleison Bremer, Nevan Subotic, Shkodran Mustafi, Issa Diop and Eder Militao were considered.

Negotiations for the Caleta-Car move went so far that Horvath waited to board the flight as soon as an agreement was made.

Marseille eventually refused to negotiate, and after joining Southampton in the summer for 8 million pounds, Kaleta-Kar has now discussed the events of almost two years ago.

“It happened very quickly,” he told the Daily Echo.

“You know, they have a lot of injured players — central defenders — so my agent called me and said that Liverpool is there.

“They are completely different and I wanted to join them because Liverpool is one of the biggest clubs in the world. But that didn’t happen.

“There was something between Marseille and Liverpool, but I don’t want to go into details of what happened.

“Now I’m here and I really like it here in England. We are playing against Liverpool now, so it will be a good test.”

Duje Caleta-Car
Kaleta-Kar would certainly be a more progressive signing than, for example, Davis, since the Englishman was transferred to Rangers in July after not appearing once.

But it is more likely that he would have been in the same net as Kabak, a promising defender who was not expected to have a long—term future at Anfield.

However, now he has the opportunity to prove himself at Southampton, and now he will do it under the guidance of a new manager, not the one who brought him to the club, and Nathan Jones will replace Ralph Hasenhatl.

It remains to be seen who Jones will favour at the heart of his defence, with players such as Armel Bella-Kotchap, Mohamed Salisu and Lyanko available alongside Kaleta-Kar.

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