Liverpool youngster Luke Chambers asks to miss England's U20 World Cup campaign as Reds' loan chief prepares to depart
- Defender to stay and aid Kilmarnock's relegation fight
- Reds teammate Quansah called up
- Woodfine to step down as director of loan management
WHAT HAPPENED? The 18-year-old, part of the England U19 side which won the European Championships last year, was set to be included in Ian Foster's squad for the prestigious U20 tournament, which gets underway in Argentina on Saturday. But GOAL can reveal that after careful consideration, the talented left-back asked to be excused so that he can assist Kilmarnock in their battle to avoid the drop from the Scottish Premiership.
As the rest of Foster's squad - including Liverpool defender Jarell Quansah - assembled in preparation for the the World Cup, Chambers was playing 90 minutes for Killie in a crucial 2-0 win over Livingston, one which gives them renewed hope of survival.
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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Chambers moved to Kilmarnock in January, and has since made 13 appearances. Born in Preston, he has been with Liverpool since the age of six and was one of a number of youngsters to make a positive impression on Jurgen Klopp during the Reds' pre-season campaign last summer. He was, in fact, on the bench for the opening Premier League game of the season, away at Fulham, and again for the League Cup win over Derby in November. Earlier this month, he signed a new long-term deal at Anfield, and he is likely to be handed a chance to shine in pre-season before being considered for a Football League loan.
AND WHAT'S MORE: There will be another departure behind the scenes at Anfield this summer, with the club’s director of loan management, David Woodfine, set to step down next month. Woodfine, who has been with the Reds since 2014 in various capacities, will be replaced on a temporary basis by Matt Newberry, currently the club’s head of academy recruitment, with a permanent successor likely to be appointed after the summer transfer window is concluded.
It is understood that the decision to step down was made by Woodfine, who still has two years left on his contract but who will now follow sporting director Julian Ward and head of research Ian Graham in leaving Liverpool, who are likely to appoint veteran German Jorg Schmadtke as their next sporting director.
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WHAT NEXT? England U20s, without Chambers, get their World Cup campaign underway against Tunisia on Monday May 22, while Kilmarnock are next in action on Saturday when they host St Johnstone in the SPL.