Jürgen Klopp was forced to field a very young squad on Friday in the FA Cup third round match against Exeter City. The team of youngsters only managed to force a replay in the 80th minute when the young left back Brad Smith netted an excellent goal to tie the game.
Despite the disappointing scoreline, Smith was one of several young players who impressed during the game. After, the Australian international reflected on his performance, working with Klopp, and his hopes for more chances with the first team.
"Jurgen has been helping me a lot and I really like him as a manager.
"He’s been telling me what he wants from me and stuff like that. I’m just happy to be back at Liverpool now and getting games and chances, and I’m happy to score against Exeter.
"[My targets are] staying around the squad, getting on the bench and getting a few more games. Just keep getting football whenever I can, really.
"I love working up at Melwood with the players and stuff. It’s really good at the moment, it’s going well.
"We took it to the replay and we’ll take it to Anfield and hopefully show them how we can play there."
After his positive performance on Friday, and with Klopp's choices at left back severely restricted at the moment, it's likely he will get more opportunities in the future. Liverpool still remain in all four competitions, so the heavy rate of games shows no sign of abating any time soon. It's a good problem to have, but a problem nonetheless. And with the team being forced into a replay against Exeter City at Anfield, that's one more match for Klopp to fit in.
Liverpool's main left back, Alberto Moreno, has been in serious need of a break after playing so many games consecutively. If Brad Smith continues to train and perform well, that option will be a relief to Klopp, the fans, and poor Moreno's tired legs.