Stewart Downing has now claimed that Stefan Bajcetic could be Liverpool’s first team squad for years to come.
Speaking on the Football Daily podcast, Downing was assessing Liverpool’s most recent defeat to Bournemouth.
After their 9-0 demolition of the Cherries earlier in the season, it was an incredibly disappointing result on Saturday.
Philip Billing’s goal ultimately decided the game, but Jurgen Klopp will feel his side deserved at least a point after Mohamed Salah’s penalty miss.
Klopp once again went with a very young combination in midfield, pairing Harvey Elliott and Stefan Bajcetic with Fabinho.
All three players eventually made way, with Jordan Henderson not fit enough to start the game.
Downing was full of praise for Bajcetic after the match, but worried Liverpool can’t rely on him every week just yet.
That’s exactly what Klopp has done since bursting onto the scene against Saturday’s opposition in the reverse fixture.
It now looks like the Spanish youngster could be a player he builds his side around in the future.
Downing on Bajcetic’s Liverpool future
Asked about Liverpool’s midfield conundrum, Downing said: “You can’t rely on Bajcetic as an 18-year-old to play every game.
“As good as he’s been, I think he’s been really, really good, he’s probably given Klopp food for thought going forward in terms of his future.
“I think he’s one that could play in the squad.”
Bajcetic only made his senior debut this season, but has already played against Real Madrid in the Champions League, and faced Manchester United.
The teenager has been benefitting from working alongside Thiago Alcantara in training.
The pair’s fathers both played together in Spain, and have continued that connection at Anfield.
Alan Shearer has echoed Downing’s thought that maybe Bajcetic isn’t quite ready to start for Liverpool every week.
Klopp has backed Bajcetic though, and fully believes in his ability.
Game after game, he’s leaving more senior midfielders on the bench in place of the 18-year-old.
That faith is starting to pay off, with Bajcetic rarely looking out of place in the Premier League.