Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp lays down plan for his Kop kids
Liverpool 3 Exeter 0
Published 21/01/2016 | 09:01
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is keen for his young talent to develop under him but he will not be fast-tracking them into the first team.
Klopp recalled 19-year-old Sheyi Ojo from a loan spell at Wolves earlier this month and after impressing in the original FA Cup tie at Exeter he scored a brilliant maiden goal on his Anfield debut in the replay.
Joao Carlos Teixeira, at 23 hardly the baby of the bunch, had loan experience at Brighton last season and he finished off the 3-0 victory with a late goal after midfielder Joe Allen, one of three senior players in the side, opened the scoring after 10 minutes.
With a number of other players also out on loan Klopp is likely to reset the whole youth programme when he gets time in the summer but he is not yet tempted to thrust some of his potential stars into the Barclays Premier League limelight just yet.
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"We need to keep them here and work with them because football is not individual - you have to develop individually but also as a team and it is not always important to impress in a one-on-one," he said.
"It is not the right moment to talk about this but in football if you are good enough you need to take the next step.
"Keep them here, work together and then I am sure the way is shorter for them but that is for the future."
On his two young goalscorers Klopp added: "I like Joao, he is a good footballer but of course players like him need matches.
"It is not allowed to be three or four years as a substitute at this age, you have to play, and I would like to work longer with him.
"It is only four months and I've seen big jumps in his development and he deserved his goal.
"He did really well in the Championship and since he came back he has not done bad.
"Ojo is very young so not 20 interviews next week or man of the match awards. Leave the guys where they are.
"Everyone who sees him play sees what big skills he has but he has a lot to work on.
"He made a goal, not too bad, and in the last game he came in and it was important for the draw."
There was more positive news with the return of Scouser Jon Flanagan 619 days after his last appearance having finally recovered from two knee operations.
He was given a warm welcome by Anfield and that pleased Klopp.
"When he came on it was a great moment after this long time," he said.
"It was a real emotional moment when everyone stood up and clapped. I don't think anyone deserved it more than him.
"It is such an unbelievably long time he was injured. It was one of the best pieces of news we could get."
Exeter boss Paul Tisdale had mixed emotions about the game.
"When I wake up tomorrow and look back it will have been an interesting cup run but I guess we had our chance a week ago when we were 2-1 up with 15 minutes to go," he said.
"I feel disappointed because I want to win games no matter how big the ask is and you try to convince your team there is a way to win the game.
"Generally I am very proud of the club and we had one or two players who did themselves proud on the pitch also."