Conor Bradley got his chance in the EFL Cup under Klopp

Where are they now? The 22 Liverpool teenagers handed EFL Cup debuts by Jurgen Klopp

Jurgen Klopp often uses the EFL Cup as an opportunity to give youngsters a taste of first team football and plenty of their young stars have since made a name for themselves.

Liverpool have enjoyed some success in the competition too as they came out on top in 2021–22 and they’ve managed to make the semi-final this year.

In total, Klopp has handed out debuts to 22 teenagers in the EFL Cup throughout his tenure so far and we’ve checked out where each of them are today.

Kaide Gordon

The dynamic winger was handed his cup debut in 2021, but he’s endured a tough time with injuries since. As a result of a complex pelvic injury, Gordon hasn’t played much football over the last few years.

He recently made a return to full training and even managed an appearance in the Europa League earlier in the campaign. Fingers crossed he has now left his injury woes behind.

Ben Doak

The Scottish youngster is still incredibly raw, but it’s hard not to get carried away with his lofty potential. Doak has been ripping things up at academy level and he’s been handed a handful of senior appearances this season too.

Ben Woodburn

Klopp gave Woodburn his first chance in the EFL Cup back in 2017 as a fresh-faced 17-year-old. Despite a bright start to his Liverpool career, Woodburn didn’t quite make the grade at Anfield and has since crafted a career elsewhere.

He left the club on a permanent basis in 2022 and joined Championship outfit Preston North End. These days the 24-year-old is often used as an impact substitute in the second tier.

Ki-Jana Hoever

After being handed his cup debut in 2019, Wolves liked what they saw from the young defender and snapped him up in a deal worth around £9million.

The 21-year-old has since spent the last two seasons out on loan and currently finds himself with Stoke City in the Championship where he is a regular starter.

Bobby Clark

Klopp gave Clark his first taste of the EFL Cup last season and he’s since gone on to make three senior appearances. The youngster featured in Liverpool’s latest FA Cup clash with Arsenal and he sure is streetwise for his age.

Sepp van den Berg

The versatile Dutch defender has been developing well while out on loan over these last few years. He certainly cut the mustard for Preston in the Championship and has since gone on to star in the Bundesliga.

After being sidelined for a large chunk of last season through injury, Van den Berg has been one of the most consistent performers at Mainz 05 this season.

While the defender has expressed a desire to make it at Liverpool, he’s not ruled out a permanent switch to the Bundesliga either.

“I like Germany and the Bundesliga. Of course, I can imagine staying in Mainz for more than one season,” the Dutch star told Bild.

Harvey Blair

Blair’s only senior appearance for Liverpool came in an EFL Cup clash with Preston back in 2021. The winger has had a tough time with injuries of late and a loan move seems more than likely this month.

According to the Daily Mail, Blackpool are among the clubs who are interested in taking the young winger on loan for the remainder of the campaign.

Conor Bradley

The Reds have a star in the making when it comes to Bradley. He got his first chance back in 2021 during an EFL Cup clash with Norwich and looks like a huge talent for the future.

Bradley thrived while out on loan with Bolton Wanderers last season, producing nine goal contributions from a right-wing-back role.

He’s since rejoined Liverpool’s senior squad and has managed to rack up 134 minutes for Klopp’s side this season.

Neco Williams

After sensing his first team opportunities at Liverpool would be limited, Williams made the switch to Nottingham Forest in 2022 in a deal worth around £17million.

The versatile wing-back is capable of playing on either side and has racked up 48 appearances since making the move to the City Ground.

Curtis Jones

Since being handed his first opportunity back in 2019, Jones has racked up over 100 appearances for the club and has always been dependable when called upon.

“We all know how good a player Curtis is, he’s technically incredibly skilled, but he finds more and more direction in his dribbling, he gets better out of situations,” Klopp told Sky Sports earlier this season.

Melkamu Frauendorf

The German midfielder has been handed a couple of opportunities by Klopp with appearances in the EFL Cup and FA Cup over the last couple of years.

Frauendorf has played all over the shop for the Liverpool academy from holding midfield to playing as a number nine. His contract with the club expires this summer and it remains to be seen if he will be offered a fresh deal.

Ovie Ejaria

The silky midfielder is one of the most technically gifted midfielders to come through the Liverpool academy, but he now finds himself as a free agent at the age of 26.

Ejaria made a name for himself with Reading in the Championship, but a series of injuries and behind-the-scenes issues saw him leave the club by mutual consent last month.

We’ve got our fingers crossed that he manages to find his next club soon in order to get his career back on track.

Tyler Morton

After making nine senior appearances for Liverpool in 2021–22, Morton has spent the last couple of years out on loan. He did well with Blackburn last season and is currently enjoying a spell with Hull City.

The 21-year-old has been a regular starter for the Tigers this year and he’s managed to produce five goal contributions from midfield. No doubt Liverpool will be keeping a close eye on his development.

Stefan Bajcetic

Bajcetic made his senior breakthrough last season and looks like a top prospect for the future. He’s already racked up over 1000 minutes for the club and is only going to get better from this point.

Unfortunately, his 2023-24 campaign has been disrupted by injuries as he’s only been able to make two appearances during the season so far.

Trent Alexander-Arnold

Since making his EFL Cup debut back in October 2016, Alexander-Arnold has developed into one of the best full-backs in world football. What a journey it has been so far.

An Anfield masterclass to start 2024.

READ: Trent Alexander-Arnold has started 2024 by fully transforming into Roberto Carlos

Billy Koumetio

The French defender has continued his development away from Anfield by spending the last couple of seasons out on loan.

Koumetio enjoyed a spell with Austria Wien last season before joining French second-tier outfit Dunkerque on loan in the summer.

Owen Beck

The young full-back was recently recalled from his loan spell at Dundee amid Liverpool’s injury crisis at left-back. Beck had been doing well in Scotland, but could now be of use to Liverpool while Andy Robertson and Konstantinos Tsimikas are injured.

“Owen has been outstanding on and off the field,” read a Dundee statement. “We would like to thank him for all he has given and wish him all the very best for the future. Owen will always be welcomed back in Dundee.”

Luke Chambers

Chambers was handed his EFL Cup debut earlier this season and he’s also been afforded some opportunities in the Europa League too.

The 19-year-old is still a raw talent, but he clearly has bags of potential. Alexander-Arnold was quick to praise the youngster for his impact earlier in the campaign.

“He has put in all the hard work; he has shown himself. He has been outstanding, he has been in and around the team, on and off the pitch,” Alexander-Arnold told TNT Sports while discussing Chambers.

“He plays amazing football as well, so it is amazing to see him out there. He has great potential.”

Calvin Ramsay

Liverpool splashed £4.2million on Ramsey back in 2022, but the youngster hasn’t had much first team action since joining the club because of injury.

The 20-year-old missed the second half of last season after having knee surgery and he’s had a tough time of it this year too.

Ramsey joined Preston North End on loan in the summer but has only managed two appearances up until this point. Rumours are currently circulating that his loan spell with the Championship club could be cut short.

Cameron Brannagan

Brannagan made nine appearances for Liverpool back in 2015–16, but after sensing his first team opportunities would be limited, he opted to move to Oxford United in January 2018.

The 27-year-old still plays for the League One club today and has since racked up over 260 appearances.

He’s also not the only former Liverpool player who’s currently thriving away from Anfield in 2024.

Dominic Solanke is currently one of the best strikers in the Premier League.

READ: 7 former Liverpool players who are currently thriving away from Anfield

Rhian Brewster

The hype surrounding Brewster was huge back in the day, especially off the back of the prolific loan spell he enjoyed with Swansea City in 2019–20.

Liverpool ended up cashing in on the young forward as Sheffield United tabled an irresistible £23.5million offer. However, since making the switch to Bramall Lane, he’s not had the best of times.

Despite being part of their promotion squad from last season, Brewster has struggled to cut the mustard with the Blades. Across 71 appearances for the club, he’s only managed to score five goals.

Rhys Williams

Williams was given his first chance in the EFL Cup as a teenager against Lincoln back in 2020. He was called upon on plenty of occasions during the 2020–21 campaign as the Reds suffered an injury crisis at the back.

Since that point, he’s spent the last few years out on loan and most recently played for Aberdeen, before being recalled earlier this month.

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