Jordan Ibe’s performances for Liverpool in pre-season may well have earned him a place in the Reds’ starting lineup when the season gets underway next month, Brendan Rodgers has hinted.
Ibe has impressed immensely with mature and exciting performances during Liverpool’s summer games so far, which have included victories over True Thai All Stars, Brisbane Roar and Adelaide United.
He then netted the Reds’ equaliser in their 1-1 draw with a Malaysia XI on Friday afternoon — the last stop on the club’s tour of Asia and Australia.
And the 19-year-old’s form has not gone unnoticed by Rodgers who, with two weeks to go until the eve of the 2015/16 Premier League season, says Ibe has certainly caught his eye.
“He’s been outstanding since he’s been out here and he’s staken a real claim to start the season in the team,” Rodgers told the club’s official website.
“[It was a] wonderful goal, I thought he was a threat all night with his pace, his quality and it was wonderful finish cutting inside and a great strike. He was very good and like I say he has been working very hard.”
Liverpool may feel slightly disappointed with the way they played in Kuala Lumpur on Friday — a drab performance was criticised by some fans.
Nevertheless Rodgers says there are mainly positives to take from the Reds’ summer so far.
“I’ve been pleased with the tour overall,” he added. “I think tonight was very humid and the conditions were difficult for us but I think the players handled it well. Coming towards the end of a long two weeks, where we’ve put in a lot of work, I’m satisfied in terms of where we’re at.”
Liverpool now return to Merseyside to continue their pre-season training at Melwood, before a friendly against HJK Helsinki next Saturday, 1st August.