Jurgen Klopp says Dominic Solanke has the quality to help Liverpool, even though he has yet to feature for the club this season.
The 21-year-old striker departed Chelsea for Liverpool in the summer of 2017 in hopes of securing more playing time with the Reds.
Solanke did manage to appear in 21 Premier League games last season, netting his first league goal in the club’s final game of the season against Brighton.
But with Daniel Sturridge’s reemergence for the club, Solanke, along with Divock Origi, has found playing time hard to come by this season.
Solanke gave another hint of his talent during the November international break, as he managed four goals in two games for the England under-21 side against Denmark and Italy.
And though there has been talk of Solanke going on loan, Klopp believes that the young striker will eventually come good, even if he currently finds the going tough at Anfield.
“His quality, his attitude,” Klopp said when asked why he thinks the youngster will be successful.
“He is not coming from the best football situation in his life but he plays these games for England which is good. I was really happy when I saw it.
“There is a long career to come. At the end of his career, Dom Solanke will not really know about these two or three years. He’s only in the situation he is in because he is so good. That is why people already think about why he doesn’t play. He started early with games at Chelsea.
“With himself and with his family, everything will be fine and he can make the career he has in his mind. I hope that will be here. Can I be sure we will see that? I really hope.”
The manager emphasised that it is not as simple as just randomly giving chances to his players and that the strong form of the options ahead of both Solanke and Origi plays a major role in keeping the duo on the bench.
“He is only here because he has the quality to help us. That’s it. Football is not like this that you [randomly pick] that I have four strikers and ‘whoops today it’s Dom Solanke, let’s go for it.’
“The other ones are not too bad. Divock Origi is a really, really good striker and is in a similar situation. That is because of the quality of the other boys, no other reason.”
Klopp noted that while opportunities haven’t come up yet they are likely to arise at some point of the season.
Therefore players need to work hard in training to ensure they are prepared to seize their chance when those opportunities do pop up.
“Form can drop, there could be injuries – you have to be ready,” he said.
“They choose that situation as well. They have the benefit of training and all the things we offer here. If you don’t play, you still have to improve. It’s about the player.
“In the moment when it’s clicking like crazy in training, I’m not blind, I’m watching. The only problem is that we don’t train that often. We recover most of the time. It’s a bit of a tricky situation but everything will be fine.
“We’re only talking now about half a year or a year of their careers, nobody remembers that.”