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“To be honest”- Liverpool youngster gives verdict on playing in pre-season

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Stefan Bajcetic relishing the opportunity to play in the holding midfield role for Liverpool

Stefan Bajcetic is a name Liverpool fans will have become familiar with during the pre-season. The 17-year-old, although a natural centre-back, has been deployed in the holding midfield role for the Reds during our friendlies.

In the friendlies against Manchester United, Crystal Palace and RB Leipzig, the Spaniard has caught the eye of fans. The 17-year-old’s displays have exuded quality and maturity.

Speaking to Liverpool’s official website, Bajcetic is not worried about playing in a different position. Having played as a centre-back throughout his youth career, the 17-year-old relishes the challenge of playing as a number six.

“It’s been good. I always played centre-back growing up but now I think I’m capable of playing there. If they give me the opportunity, I will.

“To be honest, I don’t mind [where I play]. I just want to play football. If the staff and coach thinks I’m needed there, I will play there.”

Bajcetic has taken his opportunities with both hands. The holding midfield role at Anfield is occupied by Fabinho at the moment, who has made it his own. The Brazilian has evolved into one of the best over his time on Merseyside.

The 17-year-old is training alongside the right person to develop further in the number six position. And Liverpool are in dire need of a backup to Fabinho, which the Spaniard seems to be eyeing.

Bajcetic is making sure to take in every ounce of knowledge and experience while with the first team.

Stefan Bajcetic relishing opportunity to play in the holding midfield role for Liverpool.
Stefan Bajcetic relishes the opportunity to play in the holding midfield role for Liverpool. (Photo by JACK TAYLOR/AFP via Getty Images)

“Especially for this club, the way he [Fabinho] plays, I think, is the best, and I always try to look at him and learn from him.

“It’s obviously tough to play like him but I always try to look at him and learn from his positioning, his pressing and all that.”

Liverpool’s current squad has decent backups in every position. But one area fans feel could be looked at is the defensive midfield role. While Thiago Alcantara and Jordan Henderson have enough quality to step into that role, it takes things away from their natural game.

And if Bajcetic continues to perform the way he is, who knows what the future holds for him. The 17-year-old has the potential, but to be able to mould and shape it is up to him and the management.

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The current crop of young players coming out of our academy are massive prospects. The people running the youth setup have done an excellent job developing these players.