At the start of the season Takumi Minamino was viewed by many as a great back-up to the famous front three of Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah.
People anticipated that he would slot in to the false nine role rather nicely after taking some time to settle in at the club due to moving in January 2020 and then a worldwide pandemic which has caused several lockdowns disrupted absolutely everything.
During the first half of the season he was being used sporadically by Jurgen Klopp in all competitions.
He then scored his first league goal for the club against Crystal Palace and he really impressed in the 7-0 victory which is why it was a surprise to see him not start nor come off the bench for more than ten minutes of action in the next seven games.
Because of his lack of game time, he was allowed to join Southampton on loan in January.
At the start of his loan at Southampton he impressed, scoring twice in his first four games showing the quality he had shown at Salzburg.
He unfortunately didn't score again for Ralph Hassenhutl's side however he did impress and according to some reports the Saints are in talks with Liverpool about signing him permanently.
Hassenhuttl did in fact confirm that there had been discussions with Liverpool.
The Austrian said: "We have had talks with them and they are not so sure what will happen with him."
"Liverpool may make some things happen in the transfer market. For him, it was important to play here. We gave him that chance to play and we have enjoyed having him here."
So it is clear that certainly Hassenhuttl would want him back however the key thing in those quotes from the Hampshire Live is that he said that Liverpool are 'not so sure what will happen with him.'
That does seem to be the case as Theo Squires of the Liverpool Echo has reported that Liverpool have no intentions of loaning him out which totally goes against every report of him seemingly being close to going back to Southampton.
In the report it states that Jurgen Klopp still has Minamino in his plans and that he will join back with the senior team for pre-season.
It would appear that Liverpool are indeed unsure what they want to do with Minamino like Hassenhuttl suggested as they know the potential is there and would not want to risk losing a player who could have a big role to play.
However at 26-years-old time is not on Minamino's side especially when it comes to resale value so if a suitable offer comes in now Liverpool may need to accept it to gain funds for other signings.
It looks likely for the immediate future at least though he will be a Liverpool player with pre-season being the make or break it moment for the agile Japanese attacker.