LIVERPOOL'S young-guns will welcome League One side Shrewsbury Town to Anfield tonight in an FA Cup fourth-round replay with former Ringmahon Rangers player Caoimhin Kelleher between the sticks.
Jurgen Klopp will not be in the managerial hot-seat after handing responsibility over to Neil Critchley with the German boss choosing to respect the Premier League’s inaugural winter break which takes has ruled out all of the Reds’ senior players.
With Alisson and Adrian away of their winter breaks, it will be up to the young Irish shot-stopper Cork's Caoimhin Kelleher to keep the Shrews at bay under the Anfield lights.
Kelleher regularly trains with the first team and has played in goal in the League Cup this season which ended in a heavy defeat to Aston Villa.
He has been playing with the U23's in their recent games, but tonight's game in front of the Liverpool fans will give him another chance to maybe be the hero.
The last time he played a cup game in Anfield he was the hero making the vital penalty save against Arsenal to help Liverpool win the game on penalties.
Shrewsbury manager Sam Ricketts has every sympathy with Liverpool counterpart Jurgen Klopp after the German announced he would be “playing the kids” in their FA Cup replay at Anfield.
Having squandered a 2-0 lead to draw 2-2, the runaway Premier League leaders now face an unwanted second fixture against the League One side which will interfere with the club’s scheduled winter break.
Liverpool were not supposed to have a match between February 2 and February 14 but now have to host the replay tonight.
And as Klopp has been a huge critic of the packed schedule and the demands it places on players, he has no intention of fielding his first-team stars.
While that may play into Shrewsbury’s hands, Ricketts can see his point.
“I fully understand Liverpool’s position, they are fighting on all fronts for trophies and every three days they are there to get shot at,” he said.
“This was our cup final and we will have another one at Anfield, whereas Liverpool it is just another day.
“I understand that point of view. They are fighting for the Premier League, fighting for the Champions League and at some point those players need a rest."