Liverpool swooped to sign prospect for bargain £30,000 fee despite Man United trial being booked

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According to the Athletic (subscription required), Manchester United had arranged to take Caoimhin Kelleher on trial before Liverpool swooped in to sign the goalkeeper for a bargain fee of £30,000.

Kelleher was heading to a trial with United back in 2015 from lower-league Irish outfit Ringmahon Rangers when then Liverpool academy ace Conor Masterson intervened.

Masterson, who joined QPR after his release from the Reds last summer, urged the Merseyside outfit’s coaching staff to also eye up Kelleher, having played with the stopper at youth level for Ireland.

Kelleher, who was 17 at the time, was invited to spend some time at Liverpool’s academy, with his displays convincing the Premier League giants to sign him for a bargain fee of just £30,000.

In a wonderful in-depth piece from the Athletic, Ringmahon’s secretary Scott Fitzgerald – a Liverpool fan – was left amused by the fact that United has missed out on the potential signing.

Kelleher made four appearances in cup competitions for the Reds last season and has now found himself as the prime backup to the injured Alisson, ahead of Adrian.

The 22-year-old made a brilliant save in the final minutes of Liverpool’s Champions League win against Ajax, which convinced Jurgen Klopp to hand the Irishman his Premier League debut against Wolves.

The career-defining match that saw the Reds win 4-0 with Kelleher between the sticks also provided another hilarious moment, as the club misspelt the ace’s surname on his iconic debut shirt.

It’s added by the Athletic that Dutch side ADO Den Haag wanted to take Kelleher on loan for this season, but due to fellow talent Kamil Grabara’s already having left on loan, it was decided he stick around.

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