After months of discussions between the Blues and his former club Brighton, which resulted in a £115 million trade, the 22-year-old landed at Stamford Bridge. That was not, however, prior to a tense conclusion to the window during which Liverpool attempted to sabotage the agreement with a £100 million bid of their own.
The international player from Ecuador made the decision to relocate to West London, where Mauricio Pochettino has seen him struggle in his first season. Despite the high price Caicedo was expected to pay, he hasn’t lived up to the hype thus far. He gave up a penalty in his first game for the team, a 3-1 loss to West Ham.
After losing out on signing Jordan Henderson, James Milner, and Fabinho, three players who had been the cornerstone of Klopp’s Liverpool team in recent years, the manager had to settle for second place twice when playing Chelsea. The first time was when he failed to sign Romeo Lavia, a 19-year-old, a week after losing out on Caicedo.
Following their difficulties against Chelsea thus far this season, the Reds manager has since poked fun at the two. He stated at a recent news conference: “We experienced a few odd things in the transfer market during the summer, but between us, I can say’my God were we lucky!'”
To be honest, we didn’t realise it at the time since it didn’t feel like it. That things did not turn out that way truly makes me happy. Before preseason began, I felt so optimistic about the players we already had.
We see it as a chance for Ryan [Gravenberch], and we’ve obviously realised that other central defensive midfielders don’t want to join Liverpool! Maca [Alexis Mac Allister] and Dzsoba [Dominik Szoboszlai] are already in! Then we observe the outcome.”
In an interview with Sky Sports, Caicedo revealed the true reason he declined to sign with Liverpool, stating that it was just because Chelsea provided the player with more support than Liverpool did.
He declared: “It was impossible not to choose Chelsea after I started talking to them first. They stood by me, encouraging me over the summer months when I had a lot of hardships due to the difficulty of leaving Brighton.
“They were at my side. Liverpool called me in the final moments, but it was already late. I mean, it was too late. It was difficult to tell Chelsea no because I wanted to play for them and the staff here supported me at every turn.
You know it’s Chelsea. You always have to win at Chelsea; you’ll be under pressure if you don’t. After barely four months, I feel like it’s about time because everything is fresh to me. Since I am aware of my abilities and those of my teammates, it will take time.