Union Berlin forward Max Kruse believes he would have ended up at Liverpool in 2019 if not for Divock Origi’s heroics in the Champions League that season.
According to Kruse, who ended up moving to Fenerbahce instead, his switch to Anfield was as good as agreed before Divock Origi convinced the Reds to offer him a new contract.
Kruse has suggested that Liverpool initially wanted to sell two forwards after the 2018/19 season, one of whom was Origi, but then the Belgian striker scored a crucial brace against Barcelona in the second leg of the Champions League semi-final.
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) May 13, 2019
Origi found the net again in the final against Tottenham Hotspur and, all of a sudden, Liverpool no longer wanted to bring Kruse in from Werder Bremen.
“Of course, I would have done that [moved to Liverpool]. In my opinion, it was relatively fixed. [Liverpool] actually wanted to give up two strikers,” Kruse said, as quoted by Sport1.
“Then one of the strikers scored goals in the Champions League semi-final and final. Then it was over. At that moment it was disappointing.”
While Origi signed a new deal with Liverpool, Kruse spent just a year at Fenerbahce before terminating his contract due to a wage dispute.
Kruse, 32, is currently playing for Union Berlin and has scored six goals in nine Bundesliga appearances this season.
The German forward remains in contact with Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp and Kruse insists there are no hard feelings between him and the Reds boss.
“Talking to Jurgen Klopp was awesome,” Kruse continued. “We spoke on the phone once or twice.
“Everything is great with him. I’m not angry with Jurgen. Every now and then I send him a photo from vacation.”