Share this article

Liverpool defender Nat Phillips has signed for Championship promotion hopefuls Bournemouth on loan until the end of the season.

The 24-year old is Scott Parker's fourth signing of the January window.

Phillips' fellow centre-back James Hill arrived from Fleetwood, with goalkeeper Freddie Woodman (Newcastle United) and Ethan Laird (Manchester United) also signing on loan.

Liverpool will receive a £1.5million (€1.8m) loan fee from Bournemouth, and a further £250,000 (€300k) should they win promotion back to the Premier League.

The Cherries currently sit a point adrift of second-placed Blackburn Rovers, but with a game in hand.

Phillips' Bournemouth move is the second loan deal of his career, after he spent the 2019-20 season on loan at VfB Stuttgart.

His Liverpool league debut came in October of 2020, with the Reds in the middle of a defensive injury crisis. Despite his lack of first-team experience, Phillips rarely let the side down.

His most impressive performance in a Liverpool jersey came earlier this season when he put in a commanding display in a 2-1 win over AC Milan at the San Siro.

Speaking last month, Phillips was realistic about his prospects at Liverpool, saying, "I think at this moment in time it's unlikely that I'll be playing lots of games for Liverpool, so if an opportunity arises where I get the chance to do that somewhere else.

"And if it suits everyone then it's certainly something I'd be interested in.

"I've had the exposure and experience in the Premier League and the Champions League. So maybe those situations where you're new and nervy, I've gone through that phase.

"I don't need to go through that process if I do go somewhere else. I'll be ready straight away to get involved and play."

Klopp was full of compliments for the defender, comparing his progress to that of his former Borussia Dortmund player Robert Lewandowski.

"That’s probably right, but not far off that is Nat Phillips, just in a completely different department," said the Liverpool boss.

"I remember when I saw Nat Phillips first. I spoke to him after the game and he’s one of the smartest players I ever worked with. I told him, ‘You know you are not the easiest on the eye, eh?’

"He improved in pretty much everything since, and he’s not playing. Life is sometimes not fair and I can’t blame him.

We cannot keep him forever, that’s clear. We needed him, just to be safe, for that half-year. We will see what happens in the window. He was fine doing it because he’s a great guy.

"His development is absolutely insane. You saw it last year, you would have said ‘Nat Phillips, oh my god, he plays in the last line?’

"People love him because of his heading but with his feet he is unbelievable. He’s a late starter, but his development is unbelievable. I would sign him for any club except Liverpool, because we have him."

Share this article

Read more about

Bournemouth Liverpool Nat Phillips Scott Parker

You might like