How 16-Year-Old Ki-Jana Hoever 'Blew Away' Senior Players In Liverpool Training
It hasn't taken long for Ki-Jana Hoever to make an impression at Liverpool.
The 16-year-old made his Liverpool debut against Wolverhampton Wanderers in the FA Cup, after replacing Dejan Lovren in the opening stages.
:baby: ' 16-year-old Ki-Jana Hoever becomes the youngest @LFC player to play in the FA Cup! pic.twitter.com/ZvRAxj6otz
- The Emirates FA Cup (@EmiratesFACup) January 7, 2019
Whilst Liverpool were ultimately dumped out of the competition, Hoever largely impressed at the back.
And it appears he's been impressing his Liverpool teammates prior to that cup fixture, too.
James Pearce of Liverpool Echo details how the Dutch defender caught the attention of the senior players during a training session at Melwood.
"A week before Christmas, with Klopp short on numbers, the teenager was summoned to train at Melwood for the first time," Pearce writes.
"He found himself marking Mohamed Salah in a training game and senior professionals were blown away by how well he handled the Egyptian attacker. He's been with the first-team squad since.
"As well as his obvious talent, Klopp has been impressed by the character and attitude of Hoever. There is no hint of arrogance. He's humble and grounded."
Sounds like Liverpool have a gem on their books in the shape of Hoever, who was snapped from Ajax for a measly £90,000.
The budding prospect is a natural talent and he's currently playing beyond his age group, plying his trade for the club's Under-23 team.
:speaking_head: Jurgen Klopp on Ki-Jana Hoever:
"It is just a joy to watch him. He is an incredible, confident young fella and is really a good player on top of that."
When a 16-year-old centre back does this on his debut :heart_eyes::clap: pic.twitter.com/ZTtj4FjiFG
- Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) January 8, 2019
His first game was against cross-town rivals Everton and he received huge praise from his manager, Neil Critchley.
"Unbelievable. Sixteen. Wow. Considering he played in the week as well..... He tired towards the end which was understandable," Critchley told Liverpool's official website.
"But I thought his calmness and assurance, his decision-making, his intelligence without the ball, it was terrific. Playing against a good player, I was very impressed with him indeed."
Remember the name. Will the young lad make another senior appearance, this season? Watch this space.