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"It would be a disgrace" - Liverpool's Pep Lijnders says 23-year-old cannot be left on the bench against Derby

Chris Byfield

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"It would be a disgrace" - Liverpool's Pep Lijnders says 23-year-old cannot be left on the bench against Derby

Liverpool assistant coach Pep Lijnders claimed “it would be a disgrace” for goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher to be left out of the Reds' side for the Carabao Cup third-round tie against Derby County.

Despite Liverpool’s stuttering Premier League form, the Rams will head to Anfield tomorrow as huge underdogs.

Jurgen Klopp’s side will likely ring the changes against the League One side, with Republic of Ireland goalkeeper Kelleher in line to start.

“It would be a disgrace”


Kelleher was instrumental in Liverpool's Carabao Cup triumph last term, starring in the penalty shoot-out win over Chelsea in the Wembley final.

In turn, Lijnders has claimed “it would be a disgrace” if Kelleher is not given the chance to make his first appearance of the season on Wednesday.

The assistant manager told “Yeah, Caoimh deserves it. If you shoot the last penalty in [in the final], it would be a disgrace if we took him out now!

“I think, honestly, one of my proudest moments in football was after the game when we won this cup.


“Caoimh, if you see a talent grow and you see talents turn into men and if you see men with personality and braveness and you go into a final and he takes the last penalty… and after the game, we have this moment together, it means a lot.

“So, if nothing happens today he will start for us.”


All change!


Klopp is expected to make several changes from the side that beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 at the weekend.

Curtis Jones, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Kostas Tsimikas and Fabio Carvalho were all benched at the weekend, but are likely to start for the midweek cup encounter.

Meanwhile, James Milner could return from a concussion while Naby Keita is nearing a return from a thigh issue.

Youngsters who may be in the mix are 18-year-old defensive midfielder Stefan Bajcetic, who has featured four times already this season, as well as Liverpool under-23s top scorer Layton Hewitt and winger Kaide Gordon.


Lijnders explained: “First of all, we have to say that it’s a competition we like – probably after last year, we love! It’s a competition we want to do well in… it’s a cup to fight for, it’s a cup we want to have – not only that and of course the finals are far away – but it’s a cup competition that represents our whole club.

“It’s probably the only one that represents so much the Academy, our system, our structure, all the people around who have to make sure that each player is ready for these kind of games.

“If something has been proven over the last years, it’s that we need the whole squad if you want to be successful and that’s why we brought young players in, like Calvin, like Fabio, and we always try to mix these games with a lot of experience with talent and you will see a team tomorrow, for sure, who is really hungry to show what we are all about.

“To put our game in place, to fight against a Derby who deserves full respect.”

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, Liverpool, Derby County, Carabao Cup

Chris Byfield
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