Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has backed Georginio Wijnaldum to succeed in a deep-lying midfield role against Manchester City on Tuesday while captain Jordan Henderson serves a Champions League suspension.
Klopp was eager to experiment with his squad ahead of their second leg against City and deployed the Dutch international in a defensive midfield position in the Merseyside derby on Saturday.
Although the German manager did admit that Wijnaldum still has some work to do before he can regularly play in that position, he believes that the 27-year-old will do "really well" covering for Henderson in midweek.
"The first half he didn’t know pressure so he started dribbling in a moment when...so I was ‘oh, ok, you want to produce a few grey hairs on my head obviously!’ But then he was just mature," Klopp revealed after their stalemate with Everton, quoted by the Mirror.
"Gini I know is a brilliant player, but for an attacking wide midfielder role, the split second speed how they play today, maybe he doesn’t have that exactly.
“But he is creative, he is good with the ball, he can pick the pass, he’s good with that stuff, he has a good view of the play it is all there that you need.
"He is really physically strong and so that is a really good position for him (number six), but yeah, we had two days training – kind of! - and we can not constantly train with XI v XI to give him the opportunity to get used to that position."
Liverpool fans will be confident that they can avoid an upset on Tuesday after their stellar performance against Manchester City last week. Goals from Mohamed Salah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Sadio Mané ensured the Reds would travel to the Etihad with a comfortable three-goal advantage.