We’re expecting to see Ben Woodburn at some point this evening versus Leeds United, whether that’s from the bench or the outset, if these comments by Jurgen Klopp are anything to go by…
Liverpool’s manager gave the teenager his Premier League debut against Sunderland at the weekend, and with Woodburn left out last night’s Under-23 game, it’s looking increasingly likely that he’ll feature as part of the match-day squad in the EFL Cup tie this Tuesday.
Klopp thinks the 17-year-old is ready, he’s just worried he might not be able to keep him under wraps once the world sees what Woodburn has to offer…
“I think Ben is mentally ready to start a game,” the Reds boss told yesterday’s press-conference, cited in the Echo.
“At that moment I thought it was a good idea (to play against Sunderland), he deserved it and I thought ‘Come on, let’s go’.
“It was only a few minutes. He was ready for it.
“It was only after the game that I remembered it’s now really difficult to keep him back again, not for Ben or for me, but for the public.
“We’ve shown him the Premier League for the first time but the best news for him is there is so much time for him to improve and develop and we will help him.”
It’s important we don’t rush Woodburn though, and with our excellent attacking midfield options, it’s not like there’s any need for the young Welshman to step up immediately to the plate.
He, along with Ovie Ejaria and Trent Alexander-Arnold, train with the first-team now, so learning from Klopp, Zeljko Buvac and the rest of the coaching staff will be terrific for his development.
That being said, we’re still pretty excited about the possibility of him starting at Anfield this evening…