Brendan Rodgers: Liverpool boss excited about Jordon Ibe

By Phil McNultyChief football writer at Goodison Park
Rodgers praises 'big talent' Jordan Ibe

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers praised the "brilliant" performance of teenager Jordon Ibe after he was thrust into the Merseyside derby with Everton.

Ibe, making only his second league start for Liverpool, came closest to breaking the goalless deadlock with a strike against the post.

"I've just been waiting to put Jordon in," said Rodgers, after the 19-year-old winger's display at Goodison Park.

"I had no qualms about putting him in, it was a brilliant performance."

Ibe has recently been recalled from a successful loan spell in the Championship at Derby County, and was only told he was playing on Friday.

Rodgers added: "He was unfortunate not to score with that great strike but he's got a wonderful temperament and technique and tactically he was very, very good coming into that system, knowing when to go forward and when to tuck in.

Jordon Ibe in action for Derby
Jordon Ibe scored five goals in 24 games on loan at Derby earlier this season

"He had a great spell on loan at Derby County, which is what you want for your young players.

"He was under an outstanding manager in Steve McClaren and had a really good time at a very good club.

"But it was time for him to come back and he would have obviously played in some of our cup games had he been available.

"You don't know until you put a young player in how he is going to perform but he only turned 19 in December.

The rise of Jordon Ibe
Ibe joined Liverpool's Academy from League Two Wycombe Wanderers at the end of 2011After a series of outstanding displays in the FA Youth Cup, the then 17-year-old was handed a senior debut by Brendan Rodgers on the final day of the 2012-13 season against QPR
Born in Bermondsey, Ibe can play on the wing or up front and earned a place in Liverpool's first-team squad that travelled to the USA on pre-season tour in 2012The Merseyside derby was Ibe's sixth senior appearance for Liverpool. In addition to Derby, he has also had a loan stint in the Championship at Birmingham City

"He puts a shift in and he's only going to get better. We had a lot of outstanding British talent in the team."

While Ibe was competing in his first senior Merseyside derby, Los Angeles Galaxy-bound Steven Gerrard was appearing in his 33rd and possibly last game against Everton, although Liverpool could still meet their neighbours in the Europa League.

Liverpool captain Gerrard joined the praise of Ibe.

"Jordon was fantastic and was man of the match," said Gerrard, who will leave Anfield in the summer.

"It was a sensational performance from him and he's got a big future."

In a game short on incident, Rodgers was pleased with Liverpool's performance.

"I was delighted with the composure of my young players in such an intense atmosphere," he added.

"If you look at Emre Can, he was like a Rolls Royce. He was fantastic with his composure on the ball.

"We have a really good structure defensively and it was 86 minutes before Everton got a shot on target."

Top Stories