KLOPP’S LAST GAME SOUVENIR

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 4, 2023: Liverpool's Stefan Bajcetic during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Full of confidence” – Stefan Bajcetic singled out as Liverpool’s exception

Eighteen-year-old Stefan Bajcetic continues to be one of the few shining lights this season and his showing at Wolves was no different, even as those around him floundered.

The teenager was named in Liverpool’s starting lineup for the fourth game in a row at Wolves, keeping his place alongside Thiago and Naby Keita in midfield.

He has not shirked the responsibility of his role under a wave of pressure nor as those around him struggle to find any form or consistency.

Bajcetic is, crucially, not jaded by recent events which have played their part in Liverpool’s dramatic downturn, but his exuberance makes him an exception to the current mood.

Jurgen Klopp noted that after the 3-0 defeat at Wolves, singling out the teenager for his show of confidence, something the rest of his squad are lacking.

WOLVERHAMPTON, ENGLAND - Saturday, February 4, 2023: Liverpool's Stefan Bajcetic (L) during the FA Premier League match between Wolverhampton Wanderers FC and Liverpool FC at Molineux Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“It’s really difficult to summarise. The team is not full of confidence, you can see that – the first 12 minutes were obvious, but it was about defending, being compact, being active,” Klopp told reporters.

“Do you need a lot of confidence for that? I am not so sure. Put your body between yourself and the ball and the opponent, block the ball and these kind of things, avoid the cross.

“You saw Stefan Bajcetic full of confidence, he plays football for as long as we kept him on the pitch.

“All the others, started a bit different, but the second half, with ‘low-confidence levels’, playing this kind of game.

“I think nobody would have been surprised if we scored here, that we could score once and twice and then let’s have a look at the game.

“I know it is hypothetical, 100 percent, but that was possible.

“We caused the problems ourselves, how can that happen? I cannot always cover things, it was obvious – we do it in public, that’s why everyone can see it.”

Liverpool should not be relying on an 18-year-old to hold together their midfield and it’s damning that Klopp pointed out that confidence levels do not prohibit a player from putting their body on the line.

That should be the bare minimum.