A “contract dispute” with Liverpool is the reason Socceroos youngster Brad Smith has ended his loan deal with Swindon Town and returned to Anfield, Fox Sports European correspondent Daniel Garb has revealed.
Smith, 19, was loaned to the League One club earlier this season by the Premier League giant in a bid to get more first team football.
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The left-sided player, who has been capped for Australia by Ange Postecoglou since the World Cup, hasn’t pledged his future to the Reds yet, prompting the club to recall him.
“The reason why he’s been recalled is because of a contract dispute with Liverpool,” Garb told the Fox Football Podcast.
“He hasn’t signed a new deal with the Reds.
Liverpool have said: ‘we’re not going to loan you out and get you experience until you’ve committed to our club. Until that’s sorted … why would we invest in you?”
Smith has shown glimpses of his talent when thrown in the deep end in international football, but the return to Liverpool means he is missing out on the opportunity to play first team football, which he was getting, alongside compatriot Massimo Luongo, at Swindon.
“He may well be in the squad for the Capital One Cup game with Swansea (on Wednesday EDT), but other than that he may struggle for first team football at a crucial stage of his development,” Garb said.
Garb added: “He’s a top kid with a great future … probably more as a left winger than a left back…
“(He will be) hugely advantageous to the national team as a left winger and hopefully it’s all sorted soon and he can play some football because he was going okay at Swindon.”