Ex-Liverpool wonderkid must impress Jose Mourinho to save his career

Ryan Kent must impress Jose Mourinho to avoid being sold by Fenerbahce this summer
-Credit: (Image: 2024 Anadolu)

Former Liverpool winger Ryan Kent is tasked with impressing new head coach Jose Mourinho if he wants to remain with Turkish Super Lig giants Fenerbahce.

Kent struggled during his first season with Fenerbahce, after agreeing to a four-year deal with the club last summer. The 27-year-old made just eight appearances in the league under former head coach Ismail Kartal, and it was speculated that Fenerbahce was considering selling the winger already.

But a new head coach provides a new opportunity for Kent to impress and according to Turkish outlet Fotomac, his future at the club rests in the hands of Mourinho. Summer training has already begun for Fenerbahce, meaning it could be now or never for Kent.

However, early signs aren't great as according to Haberturk. Mourinho is aware of Kent's poor attitude last year and wants all of his players to be invested ahead of next season. There may be a lifeline handed to Kent elsewhere in Turkey, but it would be a highly controversial move.

READ MORE: How Liverpool could line up after Arne Slot gives 'green light' to first signing
READ MORE: Four Darwin Nunez moments in Copa America tell new Liverpool boss Arne Slot all he needs to know

One of Kent's former head coaches, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, has recently joined Turkish rivals Besiktas and has shown interest in signing the winger. Van Bronckhorst and Kent were together at Rangers FC, and the Dutch head coach managed to get the best out of the English forward.

Kent joined the Liverpool academy aged seven and was involved in various preseason tours, but never managed to break into the first team. Loans to Coventry City, Barnsley, SC Freiburg, Bristol City, and Rangers followed, and it was in Scotland where he finally enjoyed a breakthrough season.

With six goals in 27 league appearances during that final loan spell, Rangers decided to make the deal permanent and paid $8.25 million to Liverpool. Kent signed a four-year contract with Rangers and played under both Van Bronckhorst and Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard.

Kent worked under Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard at Rangers
Kent worked under Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard at Rangers -Credit:2020 Getty Images

Kent scored 17 goals across his first two permanent seasons but suffered a dip in performance levels and left at the end of his contract. Kent was handed the No. 11 jersey at Fenerbahce and had ambitions of becoming a key player, but could be sold by Mourinho as 'The Special One' is intent on delivering success.

"[It is] hard because we have three rounds of qualifying and in Fenerbahce's case, eight players are at the Euros and they are not coming for preseason before the first round," Mourinho said in his first press conference when looking ahead to next season. "If I go, you know that I like challenges so we are going to fight to be in the Champions League.

"I want to work in Turkish football. I want to help the Turkish league. But the most important thing for me is Fenerbahce. From the moment I sign my contract, your dreams are now my dreams."