Ovie Ejaria is becoming a name Liverpool fans are looking to for the future. It's customary for fans to look for players who have shown flashes of talent with the promise of something more. Attacking players are particularly treasured, and a number of young players have failed to live up to that promise over the years. Remember Suso, Dani Pacheco, and Jordon Ibe?
Sheyi Ojo has replaced Ibe as the one to potentially inherit Raheem Sterling's crown, but making the matchday squad on a regular basis let alone securing a starting berth has become more complicated with the arrival of Sadio Mané. Only 24, Mané is proving to be a revelation. Liverpool, though, still lack a pacy and direct alternative or supplementary option to the Senegalese star—offering hope for the likes of Ojo and Ejaria.
Ejaria was electric on Sunday against Leicester City's under-23 side. The 18-year-old scored and was heavily involved in Ben Woodburn's goal. Woodburn is another where expectations are starting to grow, especially considering he's only 16. For Ejaria, though, this was a chance to build on his pre-season promise and impress Jürgen Klopp—who was in the crowd as the youngsters ran riot.
Ejaria was pleased that his team "dominated the ball" and "dominated the game" along with his own progress. Training at Melwood with senior players certainly helps him understand the game more as well as what's required to play for Klopp. It's clear that this is something he relishes and cherishes.
Training with first team players, top players, every day, is helping me improve my game so it’s really good. I think I can play in any midfield position to be honest but I think my strength is more attacking, playing further up the field.
I want to keep getting games with the U23s and hopefully I can get a chance to get minutes with the first team if I keep doing well and keep impressing.
In pre-season the manager was just saying to us (young players) to keep playing, keep doing what we’re doing, that we’re doing well. It gave us confidence and I think you could see that when we kept going on the pitch.
It won't be easy as Klopp is reportedly determined to return for the likes of Christian Pulisic in the future, and there are other youngsters with their eyes on breaking through this season. Ejaria, however, is doing and saying all the right things at this stage of his young career. The force may be strong with this one.