Jurgen Klopp has no plans to sell Caoimhin Kelleher in the immediate future, insisting the goalkeeper is on the right path at Liverpool.
Caoimhin Kelleher continues to impress at Liverpool. The Irish goalkeeper put in a superb performance in their win over Chelsea in the Carabao Cup final. The 23-year-old was instrumental during the game, which later got dragged into an incredible penalty shootout.
With Alisson Becker ahead of him in the pecking order, Kelleher knows he does not stand a chance to become Liverpool’s No. 1 anytime soon. More so, the Brazilian signed new terms to extend his stay at the club, meaning the Ireland international will have to wait for a long time to get his chance at the very top.
There were suggestions of a January loan move away from Anfield to aid his development but it never materialised. And Jurgen Klopp insists Kelleher is on the right path with his progress by being at the club than going away.
As quoted by the Mirror, Klopp said, “For young goalkeepers, it’s of course about development, and Caoimh developed here incredibly well. There’s absolutely no intention to sell him or something like that or give him a loan. Not at all. We need a strong number two. Winning a trophy, will that help [keep him]? You’ll have to ask Caoimh that.”
After his Carabao Cup performance, former Premier League goalkeeper David James urged Kelleher to leave the club to seek regular opportunities. Despite Klopp heaping praise on Kelleher after the Chelsea game, the youngster will continue to have to make do with appearances in cup ties. Hence it would make sense for him to depart, maybe even on a loan deal, to get more exposure at the highest level.
Klopp remained open to the possibility of a temporary switch, although he hinted that such a move would depend on a lot of factors. “He has here a long-term contract, and we have a long-term plan with him, but of course, we want to help the boy as well become the best version of himself. That’s what we did so far, and that’s what we will continue to do as well.”
“Maybe there is a year he will have to go on loan; I’m not sure it will be next year or maybe a year later. It depends a little bit on Marcelo (Pitaluga); he is already on a good way. We have to judge that situation. Adrian is still here and doing an incredible job. We will see. But you need the quality we have here, and if we get weaker if he wants to go somewhere, then we don’t have the chance to do that,” he said.
Kelleher has played just eight times in all competitions this season, and his target is to displace Gavin Bazunu from Ireland’s No.1 spot. In contrast, the Portsmouth keeper, on loan from Manchester City, has played 32 times this season and remains the preferred choice on the national side. This situation could compel the Irishman to consider leaving Liverpool on loan next season.