Ben Woodburn released by Liverpool but Hearts not interested
Ben Woodburn is looking for a new club after being released by Liverpool, but it is understood Hearts are not interested in signing the Welsh international who spent last season on loan in Gorgie.
The 22-year-old versatile attacker scored three goals and provided two assists in 30 appearances for Robbie Neilson’s side, but most of them were from the bench and he flattered to deceive in the Scottish Premiership.
Woodburn previously suggested that he would be open to an offer from Hearts, but that is not likely.
The Evening News revealed back in February that Woodburn was interested in a permanent deal in Gorgie. As it stands, there has been no move from Hearts to keep him on board.
At least one other Scottish Premiership team is pursuing him alongside others in England. As a Wales internationalist with first-team appearances at Liverpool, he is not short of options as he prepares for the next chapter of his career.
He remains Liverpool’s youngest goalscorer, bursting onto the scene at Anfield to score against Leeds United as a 17-year-old, but he has failed to deliver on his potential.
He made 11 appearances for Liverpool overall and was sent out on loan several times, but it’s worth noting that manager Jurgen Klopp has been an admirer.
When Woodburn broke Michael Owen's long-standing record to become the club's youngest goalscorer in 2016, he was emerging through the youth ranks alongside Trent Alexander-Arnold and looked to have the world at his feet.
The following season Steven Gerrard, who was coaching in Liverpool's academy at the time, appointed him captain of the U19s, but underwhelming loan spells at Sheffield United, Oxford and Blackpool stalled his momentum before he was offloaded to Hearts last season in the last year of his contract.
Nevertheless, Woodburn continued to impress Klopp whenever he got the chance during pre-season.
"[Woodburn] always shows up in a top, top way," the manager told Liverpool’s website in August last year. "In the pre-season he played right-back, did really well; played midfield, did really well; played the wing, did really well; played No.9, did really well. So that’s good."
Woodburn did not cement a regular starting berth in Neilson’s Hearts team but still featured in high-profile matches, helping the side finish third in the Premiership table just a year after gaining promotion.