Jurgen Klopp says he did not find it easy to sell Rhian Brewster to Sheffield United this summer.
It was Brewster’s full debut for the Blades, who signed him for around £23m before the transfer window closed in early October.
Some were surprised to see Liverpool agree to a permanent exit, particularly after Brewster impressed on loan at Swansea last term.
And Klopp admits it was not a straightforward decision to sanction Brewster’s departure.
“There is one change to Sheffield United that certainly makes them more dangerous. And that is the arrival of Rhian Brewster," he wrote in the matchday programme ahead of Saturday’s clash at Anfield, which Liverpool won 2-1 thanks to goals from Roberto Firmino and Diogo Jota.
“Our guy, our man - this will always be the case in our hearts. But now on the pitch he is Sheffield United. And anyone who knows Rhian will be aware that sentiment will be firmly left outside of Anfield when he arrives today.
“It would not be possible for me to understate my love, respect and admiration for Rhi. Such a special guy on and off the pitch. I’m not going to lie, agreeing to that transfer was really hard.
“He is a natural-born goalscorer. It’s in his DNA. He is a coach’s dream as he is so eager to learn but also a beacon of positive energy.
“He had some really hard moments with us, but throughout he never once lost belief and he was always someone who would light up a room, even when he experienced really tough times.
“We miss him but we are delighted that he has found a fantastic home at Sheffield United.
"Hopefully he has an off-night this evening and then when we travel to Sheffield. But for the other games we all support him and wish him success.”
Liverpool moved up to second in the Premier League table following their victory over Sheffield United.
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