Klopp admits dilemma over whether to play Caoimhin Kelleher or Adrian

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Klopp Admits Dilemma Over Whether To Play Caoimhin Kelleher Or Adrian Klopp Admits Dilemma Over Whether To Play Caoimhin Kelleher Or Adrian
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp and goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher after during the UEFA Champions League Group D match at Anfield, Liverpool.
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James Cox

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has praised young Irish goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher after his impressive display in his Champions League debut on Tuesday night.

The Cork native made a couple of big saves as the Reds beat Ajax 1-0 at Anfield.

Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher during the UEFA Champions League Group D match at Anfield, Liverpool.

It was the 22-year-old's fifth Liverpool appearance and with number one Alisson Becker still out with a hamstring injury, Kelleher is in contention for the Premier League clash against Wolves tomorrow.

Kelleher played against Ajax ahead of regular number two Adrian and Klopp now has a dilemma on his hands over whether the Republic of Ireland keeper has jumped ahead of the Spaniard in the pecking order.

“He looked good but he’s a really calm person and he will not be now flying the whole of the week. He is a hard worker and there’s no doubt that he will deal with all the fuss around him really well,” Klopp told the club website.

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Caoimhin is a sensationally talented goalie.

“It was a big call to throw him into that game but thank God, it worked out. That’s unfortunately not always the case, that doesn’t make the players worse, it is just the wrong timing of the manager.

“For him it was right, that’s good. Now we will see how we carry on.”

When asked directly if Kelleher had done enough to establish himself as Liverpool's second choice goalkeeper, Klopp replied: “Yes, he has but in life you have to prove things. That’s unfortunately like this."

The German coach added: “Caoimhin is a sensationally talented goalie. And for goalies it’s really difficult, goalies have to wait. They can be exceptional, but they have to wait for their chance because there’s only one goalie on the pitch and if this goalie plays for 10 years in a row, it’s pretty difficult. You can be still a wonderful goalie and nobody will see.

“Now he got the chance and I think he convinced everybody. He didn’t have to convince us, obviously – we thought it will be like this. But he convinced everybody, that’s good.

“But Adrian doesn’t deserve just to be written off now, there’s no reason for that. He supported Caoimhin in an exceptional way. After he got the information that he would not start, he behaved unbelievably. Really, really a lot of respect for that. He expected it actually, but anyway a lot of respect for it."

Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher makes a save during the UEFA Champions League Group D match at Anfield, Liverpool.

“And Caoimhin did well. So, there are not a lot of reasons I could mention in this moment to say he will not start against Wolves, but there is training in between and other things, he has to stay fit, we have sessions. All this kind of stuff.

“But he has done enough to convince me, but he did that already months and years ago. Sometimes you have wait for the right moment and we thought the right moment came on Tuesday.”

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