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Liverpool Boss Jürgen Klopp Full Of Praise For Irish Academy Prospect

Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has been impressed with certain members of his youth contingent recently.

Klopp brought the squad for what he called an extra pre-season training regime in La Manga last week, with youngster Yan Dhanda and Ireland under-19 international Conor Masterson in tow.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, the manager praised the duo’s attitude and worth ethic on the training camp with the senior team:

“I knew them both from training with us already.

“I also spoke with Pep (Lijnders, development coach) and it was a logical decision.

“We could have taken Rhian Brewster or a few other guys, but Yan Dhanda and Conor Masterson are the next boys.

“We needed two players and we decided on Yan and Conor.

“I know all of the boys and that’s really cool. It’s a good group. They have worked well, really good attitude. Yan and Conor have fitted in well.”

LA MANGA, SPAIN - FEBRUARY 16:  (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Joe Gomez, Conor Masterson, Roberto Firmino, James Milner, Connor Randall and Georginio Wijnaldum of Liverpool pose for a photograph after winning the training session competition during a training session at La Manga on February 16, 2017 in La Manga, Spain.  (Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

17-year-old Dubliner Masterson has been tied to Liverpool since joining from Lucan United at the age of 13, signing a deal with the Anfield side on his 16th birthday.

Klopp’s interest in the young defender goes back as far back as his first few months at the club, calling him up to the senior side and naming him on the bench for an FA Cup third round tie at Exeter City. Although Masterson was an unused substitute on that occasion, he is tipped for a bright future in the game.

He has also since been named as captain of Liverpool’s under-18 side, as previous skipper Trent Alexander-Arnold has been promoted to the under-23 side as well as becoming Nathaniel Clyne’s understudy at right-back.

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At international level, meanwhile, Masterson is also the current captain of Ireland’s under-19 side and, along with fellow Liverpool youngster Caoimhin Kelleher, was nominated for the FAI Under-17 International Player of the Year award last year having claimed the under-16 award the previous season.

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