Sepp van den Berg future unclear after contract clause emerges

Liverpool youngster Sepp van den Berg has had a solid season in the Bundesliga despite Mainz’ position in the table.

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Sepp van den Berg has been enjoying a productive loan spell with Bundesliga side Mainz 05.

He has made 24 appearances in Germany’s topflight, managing to score two goals in the process.

The defender initially struggled to get into the team but has now become a mainstay in the starting eleven.

Despite Mainz battling away in the relegation zone, the Liverpool man has been very impressive on an individual level.

He ranks in the 99th percentile for headers won, in the 89th percentile for blocks made, and the 78th percentile for interceptions made [FBREF.com].

What makes these statistics even more impressive is that he is being compared to his positional peers in Europe’s Top Five leagues.

He also had a strong performance during Mainz’s Saturday 2-1 loss to Bayer Leverkusen.

The 22-year-old is part of a sizeable Liverpool loan army that also includes the likes of Fabio Carvalho, Calvin Ramsay, and Owen Beck.

With how much change set to take place at Anfield in the summer, perhaps van den Berg will be able to reestablish himself at Liverpool.

He previously spent time on loan at Preston North End and German side Schalke 04 before embarking on his latest spell at Mainz.

But with Konate, Van Dijk, Gomez, and now Quansah in his way, it may be best for van den Berg to continue his career away from Anfield.

With how productive his loan spell has been with Mainz, he may opt for a permanent move there.

However, the latest report from Germany may mean he will return to Liverpool regardless of his impact at MEWA Arena.

Mainz will struggle to afford Sepp van den Berg

According to German outlet kicker (via GGFN), Mainz have a clause in the loan agreement with Liverpool.

This clause is a first right of refusal over a permanent move.

This means that Mainz can bid for van den Berg before anyone else, as well as Liverpool having to notify the German club of their intention to accept a bid so that Mainz can match it.

Bo Henriksen, the new Mainz manager, was complimentary of the defender recently, saying:

“He is a leader and the boss in the middle. He’s getting better and better.” 

However, it is reported that it is unlikely that Mainz will be in a financial position to afford the 22-year-old.

They are currently 17th in the 18-team Bundesliga and will lose around €2m even if they do manage to avoid the drop.

Mainz are 10 points from safety with 11 games left to go. They stand to lose even more money should they be relegated from Germany’s topflight.

In preparing to go down, it’s unlikely that Mainz fork over a transfer fee for van den Berg.

The defender is valued at €5 million by transfermarkt, so it now seems that Mainz cannot afford something close to that after a poor season on the pitch.

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