Liverpool promote exciting Dutch prospect to first-team training – and Jurgen Klopp is impressed

Exciting Academy youngster Ki-Jana Hoever has been promoted to train with Liverpool’s first-team squad.

The Dutch youth international is still only 16 but he has impressed Jurgen Klopp since being sent to Melwood last week.

Hoever, who can play both right-back and centre-back, was called up from the Kirkby Academy due to the Reds’ defensive injury crisis. Joe Gomez, Joel Matip, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Nat Phillips are all currently sidelined.

It’s reward for the huge impact Hoever has had at Liverpool since arriving from Ajax back in August.

He started off with Barry Lewtas’ under-18s squad but quickly progressed to Neil Critchley’s under-23s – making his full Premier 2 debut against Everton last month.

Quick, strong, dominant in the air and comfortable with the ball at his feet, Hoever has earned rave reviews for his performances for the Reds in the UEFA Youth League and it’s little surprise that Klopp has decided to run the rule over him.
Hoever didn’t feature for either the under-23s against Swansea on Monday or for the under-18s in the FA Youth Cup against Portsmouth on Tuesday because Klopp wanted him training with the senior squad at Melwood instead.

The teenager was rated as one of the biggest talents at Ajax’s Academy and they were devastated to lose him to Liverpool for a nominal fee.

He started out in the youth ranks at AZ Alkmaar before moving on to Ajax in 2014. Hoever played 13 times and scored two goals in the Under-17 Eredivisie last season.

Hoever had attracted interest from a host of top European clubs, including Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City. But Klopp’s willingness to put his faith in youth convinced him that Liverpool was the right place for his development.