Liverpool fans have Jurgen Klopp to thank for Jon Flanagan still being at the club.
The German has revealed that he persuaded Liverpool’s owners to give the defender a new contract.
Flanagan’s current contract expires in the summer but he’s set a sign a new three-year deal.
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The right-back, nicknamed Cafu by Kopites, became something of a local hero in 2014 as he nearly helped Liverpool win the Premier League title.
But a serious knee injury sidelined Flanagan for 19 months and he only returned to first-team action earlier this year.
Fortunately, the 23-year-old is set to continue his stay at Anfield. And he has Klopp to thank.
"I was a bit involved in these negotiations. I am not involved in the numbers,” the charismatic German said, per the Mirror.
“But of course I was involved in the decision that we wanted to offer him a new contract and what kind of contract.
“We are happy, especially for Flanno. With a long-term injury, it can be difficult and this is better for Flanno. There are other full-backs in the world, but not so many Scousers.
“He is our boy and we are really happy.”
Competition with Clyne
Flanagan returned to the senior team in the FA Cup win over Exeter in January. He has made four appearances since and would have regained his spot in the starting line-up if not for the impressive Nathaniel Clyne.
Klopp is a huge fan of the full-back, who made his senior England debut in 2014, and expressed his delight upon his return to action.
“When Flanno came in it was a great moment after this long time,” Klopp told reporters after the third round win, per the Liverpool Echo.
"It was a real emotional moment"
“To be honest I haven't had him very often in training until now because we need really to be careful with him and it's not allowed to be too intensive. It's always training, break, recovery.
“He had a few minutes in the U21s. Connor Randall had a little muscle problem so we had the chance to bring Flanno and it was a real emotional moment.
“I think nobody deserved it more than him. It's such a long time, an unbelievable long time. Since I've been here he's always been injured but never in a bad mood.
“That's unbelievable. He's a really strong lad, hopefully now it goes on.”