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Klopp Promotes Dutch Youth Defender To First Team Training

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The 16-year-old Ki-Jana Hoever has impressed at the academy, and Klopp wants a closer look.

Liverpool Training Session Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images

If you haven’t heard, Liverpool are in a wee bit of an injury crisis at the back. With injuries to Joel Matip and Joe Gomez, the Reds are down to just two senior center backs. With James Milner and Trent Alexander-Arnold not yet fit, Jurgen Klopp has had to find solutions.

One of those solutions has been to dust off Nathaniel Clyne, and give him a run out against Manchester United. However, Klopp is keeping other options in mind, including possibly giving a runout to youth prospects. While names like Nathaniel Phillips and Rafael Camacho are more familiar to Liverpool fans, Klopp is apparently interested in bringing 16-year-old Dutch defender Ki-Jana Hoever into the fold.

Hoever moved from Ajax’s academy this summer, and has apparently impressed, quickly rising through the ranks. He started with the U18s, but made his debut for the U23s last month.

The Dutch starlet can play center back or right back, which could make him an interesting shout given the current squad crisis areas. He missed the last U23 and U18 matches because of his first team training under the boss at Melwood.

Of course, being just 16-years-old, there’s every chance that Klopp would not want to throw him into the pressure cooker that is the Premier League (in a title challenge, no less!) at this point. Regardless, it must send a great message to everyone at the academy that the boss is keeping an eye out for potential starlets rising through the ranks for inclusion in his first team squad.