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Things to Know About Liverpool Youngster Billy Koumetio

Billy Koumetio turned the youngest participant ever to seem for Liverpool in a Champions League match when he emerged from the bench towards FC Midtjylland midweek.

The 18-year-old’s senior debut represented a big landmark on a highway the Reds hope will lead to stardom. And ideally sooner somewhat than later, the best way issues are going with accidents.

Here is every little thing you want to know concerning the newest starlet to emerge from the academy ranks.

Koumetio joined from US Orleans aged 16 | Gareth Copley/Getty Images

Some gamers take scenic routes to the highest. Mohamed Salah, as an illustration, did not arrive at Liverpool till he was in his mid-20s, by way of a stint in Switzerland, a failed spell at Chelsea and some extra profitable seasons in Serie A.

Virgil van Dijk lower his tooth with Groningen, Celtic and Southampton earlier than he was given an opportunity at Anfield, and the identical goes for Andy Robertson, who was enjoying within the fourth tier of Scottish soccer simply 4 years prior to his first Liverpool look.

Not Koumetio, although.

His debut could have got here aged 18 years and 25 days, however he was making an impression on the recruitment workers from earlier than his sixteenth birthday. He was recruited from French membership Orleans shortly thereafter, having satisfied everybody at Anfield he was a star within the making.

A substitute look for Billy Koumetio. The youngest @LFC participant ever to make his debut within the Champions League. He was a ball boy at Anfield the evening that Liverpool beat Barça 4-0.

— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) December 9, 2020

Shortly after arriving at Anfield, Koumetio was tasked with the job of ball attendant for a useless rubber Champions League semi-final second leg with Barcelona.

The Reds have been 3-0 down from the primary leg and appeared out of the competitors, till the ridiculous occurred.

“It was amazing, unbelievable. I could see the big boys, the big players, in front of me. It was a great experience for me,” he mentioned beforehand.

“That drives me a lot. When I was sitting so close to the pitch and saw the big boys, they really inspired me.

“I was motivated to work really hard to get to that level.”

Despite nonetheless principally being a baby, Koumetio stands at 6ft 4in.

He’s a towering presence. A monster. A unit. Just an enormous, huge lad.

His spectacular stature does not hinder his technical skill, although. Formerly a winger at youth stage for Lyon, Koumetio can play. His dribbling and distribution are up there with any central defender you are probably to see on the high stage.

He’s left-sided too, which is at all times a bonus.

Jurgen Klopp actually charges Koumetio and that was mirrored in his easy evaluation of {the teenager} when discussing his rising expertise earlier within the season.

Rhys Williams and Caiomhin Kelleher got detailed descriptions. Koumetio? One phrase did the trick.

Klopp mentioned, per the Liverpool Echo: “Rhys Williams? From the moment he trained with us, I could see he was a proper talent. 

“Billy Koumetio? Incredible.”

The boss on Liverpool youngster Billy Koumetio:

“Billy the kid. He doesn’t look like a kid! In my opinion, his face looks like a kid but then all the rest is like, wow! […] That’s pretty special. Yes, he’s a big talent.” ??

— Redmen TV Academy (@RedmenAcademy) August 17, 2020

Billy the Kid was a legendary Wild West outlaw whose 19th century gunslinging antics have been elevated into myth.

It’s also the nickname Jurgen Klopp affectionately pinned on Koumetio.

Though he admits there is’t much childlike about ‘the kid.’

“He doesn’t look like a kid! In my opinion, his face looks like a kid but then all the rest is like, wow,” Klopp said in August.

“I told him, ‘Last time I saw you, you were like 20 centimetres less if I’m right.’ That’s pretty special. Yes, he’s a big talent.”

Koumetio’s inspiration | Jonathan Moscrop/Getty Images

Sometimes as a young player coming up through the ranks, you want to stand out from the crowd. Other times, you just want to fit in.

The latter strategy is probably best when you’re a centre-half at Liverpool. You’re not going to outdo Virgil van Dijk, anyway.

“At the second Virgil van Dijk actually evokes me,” Koumetio said after joining up with the first-team for pre-season. “I’m going to the sport more often than not and I like watching Virgil doing his sport very, very nicely. Sometimes I’m making an attempt to copy him.”

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