Liverpool striker Awoniyi completes £ 6.5million transfer to Union Berlin


The 23-year-old had been at Anfield since 2015 but was unable to play for the club due to work permit issues.

Liverpool have confirmed that Nigerian striker Taiwo Awoniyi has joined Union Berlin in a £ 6.5million (€ 7.5million / $ 9million) deal.

The Nigerian spent last season on loan with the Bundesliga squad, but has now moved permanently to the German capital after the Union beat rivals Mainz on signing the 23-year-old.

Awoniyi had left with the Liverpool first team during their pre-season training camp in Austria, but underwent a medical examination on Tuesday ahead of his move to the Union, whose own training camp is in Tyrol, before putting pen to paper on five- year contract.

What is the problem?

Awoniyi joined Liverpool in 2015, with the Reds paying Imperial Soccer Academy £ 400,000 ($ 550,000) after seeing him play for Nigeria at the U20 World Cup in New Zealand.

Unable to secure a UK work permit, he spent the next six seasons on a series of loans, spending time at FSV Frankfurt in the German second division, Eredivisie team NEC Nijmegen and the pair. Belgian Mouscron and Ghent.

Then came a season with Mainz in 2019-2020, before joining Union Berlin last summer. He made 22 appearances there, scoring five times to help the unpretentious club qualify for the UEFA Europa Conference League.

Union pursued a standing deal aggressively thereafter, having been taken by the power, selflessness and quality of the striker.

Awoniyi had admirers in England after getting a UK work permit for the first time this summer, but interest from Stoke and West Brom did not result in a firm offer and he has now returned to Germany.

Liverpool confirmed the news in a statement on their website, and Goal understands they negotiated a 10% sell-off clause in the deal, a key factor given Anfield sources insist the player is likely to one day end up in the Premier League.

Anyone else ready to go?

Awoniyi followed Marko Grujic through the exit door of Anfield, with the Serbian midfielder finalizing a permanent move to Porto earlier Tuesday after a successful loan to Estadio do Dragao in 2020-21.

Meanwhile, Goal revealed on Monday that Fulham was leading the race to sign Welsh international winger Harry Wilson, although Liverpool’s valuation of £ 15million ($ 20.5million) looks set to remain a stumbling block.

Xherdan Shaqiri is wanted by Lazio, and Divock Origi’s future remains uncertain. Liverpool are reportedly considering deals for defenders Neco Williams and Nat Phillips, while Loris Karius will almost certainly be offloaded this summer, as will Ben Woodburn.

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