It makes sense for every parent club to include some kind of agreement in a loan deal that allows them to bring the player back before the end of the season.
The player could go on to prove they are ready to feature at the higher level, or the parent club might need some cover due to injuries or an incredibly busy schedule.
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That’s the situation that faces Liverpool right now, December was already packed with the Club World Cup, but they still face seven fixtures between now and the start of February. That could explain their recent announcement to recall Nat Phillips from his loan spell at Stuttgart:
We have reached an agreement with Stuttgart for Nat Phillips to return from his loan spell in January.
Phillips will return at the beginning of next month and be eligible for Reds matches, starting with the FA Cup tie against Everton.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) December 27, 2019
The phrasing that they’ve “reached an agreement” rather than “recalled” is an odd one, it could suggest they’ve had to pay Stuttgart some money to terminate the deal, but it’s not clear.
That tweet also indicates that Liverpool have brought him back with a view to including him in the first team squad over the next few weeks. Stuttgart were relegated and play in the second division of German football, with Phillips playing nine league games during his time there.
It will be interesting to see if he actually features for the first team or if Liverpool have plans to send him somewhere else for the rest of the season, but it does sound like there could be a chance for him to impress when he returns.