Sunday 21 April 2019

Ireland's Caoimhin Kelleher now 'part of Jurgen Klopp's first-team plan' at Liverpool

Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher
Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher

Irish teenage goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher is now part of Jurgen Klopp's first-team squad at Liverpool.

The 19-year-old Corkman impressed for the first team during Liverpool's pre-season tour of America and he was left out of the Under-23 side against Manchester City on Friday night with Kamil Grabara taking the number one jersey.

Kelleher warmed up Allisson and Simon Mignolet before Liverpool's 1-0 win over Brighton on Saturday and the Liverpool Echo reports that Klopp is "blown away" by his development and has made him number three at Anfield.

Following Liverpool's pre-season friendly win over Napoli in Dublin, Klopp hailed the impact of Kelleher.

"He is an outstanding talent. Outstanding. Very cool with the ball, you saw that in pre-season when he played in front of 100,000 people, that he wasn't bothered about that which is a very important skill to have," said Klopp, in quotes reported by Balls.ie.

"For most of his youth he was an outfield player, he has fantastic reactions. If nothing serious happens, he will have a really fantastic future. I don't know how many really good goalkeepers that Ireland have but one more is never a big problem. I like him a lot and he will be in our squad."

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While Alisson Becker was becoming only the third Liverpool goalkeeper in 51 years to keep a clean sheet in the opening three league matches of the season the man he replaced, Loris Karius was joining Besiktas on a two-year loan.

The Turkish club will pay a £2.2million fee now and are obligated to buy him for a further £7.25million in 2020 if appearance and European qualification criteria are met.

"We said goodbye yesterday, He is really looking forward to it, it is good for him and I really think Loris is a fantastic goalkeeper at a very good age," added Klopp.

"A lot of people spoke about our improved defensive things and as good as Alisson was in the last three games we were good when he was not here and Loris did a lot of good things.

"Besiktas have a good team who have a good chance to win the league and they now have a really good goalkeeper and I am really happy for him."

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