If not for Alisson Becker’s injury last month, Caoimhin Kelleher would likely have been playing his football elsewhere this season.
Caoimhin Kelleher was set for a loan move in the most recent transfer window but that fell apart when Liverpool felt they needed additional back-up after Alisson Becker’s injury in early October.
Alisson was expected to be out for almost two months, which brought a swift end to Kelleher’s hopes of securing a move away from Liverpool to collect some crucial first-team experience.
The Brazilian goalkeeper returned much sooner than anticipated but the Reds weren’t to know that before last month’s transfer deadline.
Kelleher was named in Stephen Kenny’s Republic of Ireland squad for the upcoming international games against England, Wales and Bulgaria.
And Kenny has revealed how the 21-year-old came close to moving to a Dutch club in the transfer window, which would have worked out brilliantly for Ireland in terms of a young player getting experience.
“Caoimhin Kelleher was exceptional for the U21s. In training, Alan Kelly, our goalkeeping coach, can’t believe how good Caoimhin Kelleher is,” Kenny said of the Cork shot-stopper.
“He hadn’t appreciated that he was actually as good as that. We really need to see Caoimhin Kelleher get matches under his belt, because he is ready to play for us.
“We feel he is good enough to play for Ireland, but he’s not playing matches so it’s an issue.
“He was supposed to go on loan to Holland in the last window in the Eredivisie. When the goalkeeper at Liverpool [Alisson] got injured, that move was pulled on him then.
“He wanted to go on loan, he was ready to play. We certainly would have benefited from that. It’s not easy to play at Liverpool, they’re the world champions at club level.”