Jurgen Klopp defended Liverpool’s treatment of young players after the agent of Bobby Duncan criticised the way the teenager was being treated.
Duncan’s agent Saif Rubie posted a statement on social media this week claiming his client was being bullied by the club and was suffering mental health problems as a result.
The 18-year-old has been linked with Fiorentina and FC Nordsjaelland but the Reds have insisted he will not leave this season.
Klopp defended the way Duncan had been treated in his press conference ahead of Liverpool’s clash with Burnley at 5.30pm on Saturday, which is live on talkSPORT.
“Bobby is one of our young players we really, really care about. Really, really care,” he said.
“Not only young players but all players in football, sometimes contract things cannot be a massive problem because there are bigger problems in life but can be a problem because it is whether to extend or not extend.
“It is a normal thing but with young players we are particularly sensitive.
“We need to do the right things, all the different parties, and everything will be fine.”
Duncan, an FA Youth Cup winner with the Under-18s for whom he scored 32 goals last season, has graduated to the under-23s, having only joined from Manchester City last summer for a £200,000 compensation fee.
He was left out of the under-23s win over Southampton on Monday but is expected to return to play for Neil Critchley’s side and Klopp said some perspective was needed for all youth team players looking for their breakthrough.
“The big problem they could have is they lose patience because life is like this,” added the Reds boss.
“You have to make it step-by-step if you are not Lionel Messi at 17 ready to play for Barcelona – you don’t see that very often.
“Patience in the right way, in a football way. Not waiting for things, being ready for making all the steps you need to do: training hard, playing at the next level, doing what the coach is telling you and everything is fine.”