Rising talent Curtis Jones continues to impress after his England U21 debut saw him bag himself an assist against Andorra on Wednesday.
The young Lions were held to a draw in the Euro qualifiers after both sides scored three goals each. Tom Davies, Josh Dasilva and Eddie Nketiah were on song to help their country secure a point. Jones was eagle-eyed with his assist for England’s second, setting up Brentford’s Dasilva in front of goal.
At the rate the Merseyside local is flourishing, it could be argued that he will be a ready-made replacement for Gini Wijnaldum next season, should the Dutchman leave the club.
Jones joins fellow academy graduate Trent Alexander-Arnold as a young Scouser to wear their liverbirds with pride. Despite only recently being fully integrated into the senior setup, the 19-year-old has already made huge waves as he fights for his place.
His long-range stunner against Everton to seal a win in the FA Cup last season was the first moment heads started to turn. Since then, Jones has scored a brace in the Carabao Cup and needed just three Premier League games before he found the back of the net. The teenager has now made a total of 18 senior appearances for the club, with five goals and one assist to his name (via Transfermarkt).
Liverpool have been trying to reach new agreements with Wijnaldum over the course of this year, but the Reds may need to accept he is headed for pastures new. The 29-year-old has just one year left on his current contract and could be leaving as a free agent next summer, especially amid reported recent interest from Barcelona and former boss Ronald Koeman, who is a huge fan of the midfielder.
With Fabinho performing superbly as Liverpool’s No.6, Jurgen Klopp has been experimenting with the midfield pairing to start just in front of him. Jordan Henderson is currently ruled out due to injury and James Milner has accepted a more reserved role from the bench. With new signing Thiago Alcantara also yet to fully prove himself, Jones’ time to impress the manager could be now.
Klopp has already voiced his thoughts on the playmaker, lauding him for being an “exceptional talent” after he bagged a double over Lincoln City (via Daily Mail). Jones’ eye for creating goals is something the Reds will really benefit from – he boasted an impressive 13 goals and seven assists in 33 reserve league appearances (via Transfermarkt).
With a space in the midfield likely to be opening up next season, the young Scouser could be on track to starting his own Steven Gerrard-inspired journey.