Fabio Carvalho has suggested he was played out of position in his disappointing first season at Liverpool.
The 20-year-old attacker, who joined Liverpool from Fulham in 2022, was tipped for big things as one of the rising stars of European football.
Despite a promising start in which he scored goals in the 9-0 win over Bournemouth and a 98th-minute match winner against Newcastle, Carvalho saw his game time diminished in the second half of the season.
The Portugal Under-21 international made just four Premier League starts for the Reds in 2022/23 — by contrast 20-year-old Harvey Elliott made 18 — and has now been loaned out to RB Leipzig for the upcoming campaign.
Speaking to international Bundesliga reporters, Carvalho touched on what went wrong in his first year at Anfield, suggesting he was not offered the chance to show his talent in his favoured 'number 10' position.
He said: “I feel like the reason it hasn’t worked at Liverpool is because of the position I have been playing on the left, which is not really my position. I was told I’d come in and play as a 10, but we don’t really play with a 10. Whereas here [at Leipzig] we play with two 10s. And it's more I'm able to get on the inside, I'm able to turn and go forward. So I'd probably say that's the reason it hasn't worked out."
Speaking about the switch to Germany and swapping places with Dominik Szoboszlai, who went the other way to Liverpool in a £60m move, Carvalho said: “From the beginning, RB Leipzig showed the most interest. I know how they play and I know their style, and it's very compatible to how I am, so it was kind of like a no brainer.
“I’m a creative player. I’m good on the ball. I work hard as well, not just for myself, but for the team. I don’t like speaking about other players, but Dom is a very good player. I have confidence in myself and and my ability and I'm sure I'm going to do well for RB Leipzig and we'll see what the future holds."
When asked about a return to Anfield after 2023/24, Carvalho said: "We don't really know what happens next year, I may be here or may be at Liverpool. So we'll see, I'll just focus on this year and doing the best I can.”
Speaking more positively about his time at Liverpool, the young forward name-checked several Reds stars who helped him during his time at Anfield — reserving special praise for James Milner.