It’s fair to say if the German wasn’t initially aware of the magnitude of the task he faces to take Liverpool back to where they want to be, he is now.
The 48-year-old has been burdened by a growing injury crisis to go with a chronic lack of confidence in the final third, which could provide a chance for some fresh faces against the Cherries.
News emerged on Wednesday morning that Klopp intends to start three of his most promising youth products – Joao Teixeira, Cameron Brannagan and Connor Randall – at Anfield.
So who are the Reds’ trio set for their big first-team opportunities? talkSPORT takes a look.
What a brilliant few days for the 19-year-old. On Monday, he signed a new long-term deal at the club keeping him at Anfield until 2018 ahead of what will be his first start for the Reds against the Eddie Howe’s side.
Klopp has already expressed his admiration for Brannagan, stating the following about the young midfielder:
“For his age he brings everything you need for a midfield player he wants to play football, he’s strong, he’s clear, he’s cool.”
If the German thinks a player is ‘cool’ there’s a high chance he will be a big part of his future plans. The captain of the Under-21 side, Brannagan is an attacking midfielder capable of offering the Reds an asset they’ve distinctly lacked for some time – a goalscoring threat from midfield. Rodgers recognised his qualities, too, fielding him as a substitute in this season’s Europa League draw at Bordeaux.
The problem for Brannagan may well be the weight of expectation on his young shoulders simply because of the position he adopts. Liverpool supporters were blessed by Steven Gerrard’s brilliance over the last decade and a half, and they now yearn for a natural heir to their former captain. Could Brannagan go some way to emulate the Anfield icon?
With Nathaniel Clyne in need of a rest and Joe Gomez likely to miss the remainder of the season with knee ligament damage, a chance arises for Randall to impress at right-back. The 20-year-old has reportedly pleased Klopp enough in recent training sessions to warrant talks over a new contract.
He has become a mainstay of the Reds’ Under-21 side after captaining the Under-18s for a considerable period. A major factor that may endear himself to Liverpool fans greatly is his Scouse roots, especially given the paucity of local lads in the first-team setup after the departures of Gerrard and Jamie Carragher.
Randall’s versatility is his main attribute, playing across the defence, as a holding midfielder and even deputizing as a striker at times in the last 12 months. If he can shine at Anfield he could stake a real claim to act as Clyne’s understudy given Klopp’s current shortage of defensive reinforcements.
The most experienced of the young triumvirate, Teixeira has nearly a full season of Championship football under his belt which has helped him assimilate to the demands of the English game.
The 22-year-old spent last season on loan at Brighton where he excelled, claiming the Seagulls’ Young Player of the Year award after finishing the campaign as their top scorer in the league. Despite breaking his leg in April, the spell was categorically viewed as a success. While his goalscoring exploits were impressive, his vision was his standout trait on the south coast after creating 63 chances – over 50 per cent more than any of his team-mates.
Moulded in the same style as Philippe Coutinho, Teixeira’s decision to drop down the leagues to get first-team experience instead of moving abroad was praised, particularly after Suso’s Liverpool career faded into obscurity after a temporary spell in La Liga.
He actually made his Reds’ first-team bow back in their 2013/2014 title tilt as a substitute in a 3-2 win at Fulham, but has been made to wait for another chance to shine ever since. He did, however, catch the eye with two assists for the Merseysiders in a pre-season win over a Thai All-Stars team in July.