Joe Gomez: I always dreamed of playing for this Liverpool manager
The Liverpool defender explains how Jurgen Klopp was able to relate to England Under-21 international's injury nightmare
Joe Gomez has admitted that he dreamt of playing under Jurgen Klopp during the Liverpool defender’s long injury lay-off.
The England Under-21 international suffered a serious knee injury during international duty just days after Klopp was appointed as Brendan Rodgers’ replacement at Anfield.
Gomez encountered a series of setbacks to rule the promising defender out of contention for over 18 months before he finally made his first Liverpool start under Klopp back in a 1-0 win against Crystal Palace.
The 20-year-old has already made a further four appearances under Klopp in the Premier League, while he got his first taste of the Champions League in a 4-2 win against Hoffenheim.
Gomez is widely regarded as one of Liverpool’s brightest prospects after he moved to Charlton Athletic in a £5m deal in the 2015 summer transfer window and impressed at the start of his first season in the Premier League before his injury setback.
And the Liverpool defender revealed that he dreamt of playing under Klopp and shed light on how the ex Borussia Dortmund boss was able to relate to Gomez’s injury nightmare.
“He has been great for someone like me going through an injury like that and then coming back,” Gomez told Liverpool’s website.
“For him to be able to bed me in and speak to me at the same time has been ideal, and it’s made it a lot easier for me in comparison to how it could have been.
“He did his ACL previously, so there was that similarity in that he understands what it’s like to go through something like that and also know that when you come back things might not be quite the same. He understood the procedure and what was going on.”
On playing under Klopp, Gomez added:
“I want to play for him and for the club and try to put [the injuries] behind me. I’m thankful for the opportunities that he has been giving me. When I was out, he was someone I was always dreaming of playing for, but the timing was difficult and I didn’t get the chance. Now I’m just thankful and want to keep taking it in my stride.”
Gomez was appointed the England Under-21 captain to cement his impressive start to his professional career.