Jurgen Klopp rejected the notion Liverpool would play their youth players in the final games of the Premier League season now they are champions.
Liverpool have a superb reputation for promoting academy players into their senior squad and the Reds are 20 points clear of Manchester City in second, despite suffering a 4-0 defeat to the Sky Blues this week.
Klopp was asked if there was now an opportunity to give the likes of Harvey Elliott, Neco Williams and Curtis Jones more playing time, but appeared annoyed at the suggestion.
‘That’s the next thing. I don’t think these kind of questions will be asked to Frank Lampard or Ole Gunnar Solskjaer,’ the Liverpool manager replied.
‘We are champions now so we should now bring the young boys [into the team]. “Give them a chance, let’s have a look”.
‘We lose the game and everyone is going at us. We want to win football games and the best players need to be on the pitch.
‘If they are part of this then they will be on the pitch. They are so close, they are really good. And they are our future, 100 per cent.
‘But they will not play now because I want to see them in a Premier League or give Premier League games as Christmas presents.
‘We cannot do that. We are really in the competition. It’s not only about other teams.
‘Aston Villa and Brighton are fighting for the league. It’s not about respect, we just want to do [our best] and the [young] boys are really good.
‘But it’s not like giving appearances or Premier League games away like sweets.
‘We have to make sure the best eleven on that day is on the pitch and the other guys who fit best in that formation will come on.
‘We make that decision for one game and for the next game, another one. They are really close, but we will not give Premier League matches just for fun.’
Liverpool’s final fixtures
Aston Villa (H) – Sun, July 5
Brighton (A) – Wed, July 8
Burnley (H) – Sat, July 11
Arsenal (A) – Wed, July 15
Chelsea (H) – Sat, July 18
Newcastle (A) – Sun, July 26
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