Jurgen Klopp discussed Liverpool’s loan system today during his press-conference, and is of the belief that it’s currently detrimental to the youngsters shipped out, the Echo reports.
We currently have 12 players out on loan, including big money signings Mario Balotelli and Lazar Markovic, while Tiago Ilori and Luis Alberto didn’t arrive for pennies either.
The German claims it’s an alien system to him, as Bundesliga clubs rarely loan out players and instead play them in the second teams. Of course, in England, we don’t have genuine reserve teams anymore – but an Under-21 league which has proved largely unsuccessful in developing talent.
“Of course I am looking at the loan players,” Klopp began.
“I try to learn all about English football because it is completely different to other countries. Liverpool a few years ago had 20 to 25 players out on loan.
“It is not normal to have players on loan in Germany, but in England it is.
“When I have time I watch these players. I went to Wolverhampton to watch Ojo but he didn’t play!
“It’s part of my job – what we do with the guys here and those out on loan. There will be a time when we have to make a decision.
“I’m not sure in this moment it’s always best to give young players to other clubs. I think it’s a kind of pressure you don’t need at that age.
“You play together with experienced players every day and have to show you are better than them. Everyone at home is expecting you to take the next step.
“Maybe we need to cool down the situation a little bit, hold on to these guys longer and let them play in our second team and develop as a team. We will see what we will do in the future.
“Usually a manager in England has not enough time to change things. But we will try to take our ideas and change a few things for the future.”
Klopp makes a mighty interesting point, which actually backs up some research we did at the start of the season on the number of players who leave Liverpool on loan and return to become an important member of the first-team squad. Shockingly, Jordon Ibe was the only notable success (having thrived at Derby before returning) of 111 loan deals out of Liverpool since 2009/10.
Klopp thinks that the pressures of competing against seniors away from home is often too much, and youngsters would instead benefit from being around Liverpool and developing here instead.
It’s a tricky one, as we have only a limited number of Under-21 and Under-18 matches, and a plethora of promising youngsters.
But essentially, if a player is good enough at a young age, loan deals are never deemed a necessity. Ibe is the anomaly, while the likes of Steven Gerrard, Michael Owen, Raheem Sterling, Jon Flanagan etc. just went straight into first-team contention when they were deemed ready.
Which side of the debate do you stand on, Reds?