Liverpool supporters have been more buoyant in the Transfer Tavern in the last few days after seeing their team get back to winning ways courtesy of a 3-0 success over struggling Huddersfield Town in the Premier League on Tuesday night.
Jurgen Klopp’s men went into their clash in South Yorkshire off the back of defeats at the hands of Swansea City and West Brom, the latter seeing their participation in the FA Cup come to an end at the fourth round stage for the third season in a row. Yet the result was never really in doubt on Tuesday as goals from Emre Can, Roberto Firmino, and Mohamed Salah secured a routine success for the Merseyside giants, who moved above Chelsea into third place following their defeat to Bournemouth on Wednesday.
Consequently, there have been many happy Liverpudlians in the Tavern in recent times, several of whom have been discussing their side’s efforts in the January transfer window, which of course saw big deals take place for defender Virgil van Dijk and attacker Philippe Coutinho.
Additionally, many players left Anfield on loan for the second half of the season, most notably striker Daniel Sturridge who moved to West Brom, but fellow forward Danny Ings remained at Liverpool despite reported interest from other Premier League clubs.
As such, it appears that the 25-year-old’s faint World Cup chances are all but over, as the former Burnley forward is highly unlikely to get the minutes required to force his way into Gareth Southgate’s thinking.
Many may have felt that Ings was a long way off a place in England’s 23-man squad for the summer, but given the form he showed prior to moving to Anfield back in 2015, a decent spell in front of goal in the second half of the campaign may well have propelled him into the reckoning, especially given the lack of form other English strikers have shown this term.
Tammy Abraham and Dominic Solanke were named in the last squad by Southgate for friendlies against Germany and Brazil, yet neither have scored as many top-flight goals as Ings has in his career – he is at their level and if not above to suggest that he’d surely be in the conversation.
Ultimately, the 25-year-old’s 11 goals in 35 Premier League games for Burnley back in the 2014/15 campaign paved the way for his one and only England cap to date, which came against Lithuania in October 2015, but since then injuries have wrecked his progress for both club and country.
And that is why a loan move away this month would have been ideal for the striker, as not only would he have resurrected a club career that has been stunted by injury in the last few years, but it could well have got his international career going again as well.
As such, Ings is likely going to play second fiddle to Brazil international Firmino at Anfield, and is also unlikely to dethrone the likes of Salah and Sadio Mane in the other attacking roles – ultimately, he looks set for a sustained period on the substitute’s bench.
And while Klopp may deem the 25-year-old as a key part of the squad at Liverpool, his likely lack of first team football in the second half of the campaign isn’t going to help Ings get back to the level that earned him a move to Anfield, and indeed his one England cap.
So while Liverpool arguably made the right decision in keeping the striker as back-up for the rest of the campaign, it’s a decision which has all but ended Ings’ faint hopes of making this summer’s World Cup with England.
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