Liverpool's Ki-Jana Hoever Talks Jurgen Klopp, Virgil Van Dijk, UCL in B/R AMA

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistAugust 6, 2020

Liverpool's Ki-Jana Hoever during the English League Cup quarter final soccer match between Aston Villa and Liverpool at Villa Park in Birmingham, England, Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2019. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)
Rui Vieira/Associated Press

Ki-Jana Hoever is still looking for his breakthrough with Liverpool's first team, but the 18-year-old remains one of the Premier League champion's brightest young talents. 

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp called him "a wonderful kid and a sensational young player" in an interview with the club's official site last August.

As the Reds continue to bask in their league title, Hoever stopped by with B/R for an AMA session to answer a number of pressing questions.

The following is the full transcript from the AMA session.

            

Rhettro: What is it like playing for one of the best managers in the world such as Klopp?

It's an honor to be around him so early on in my career. You learn so much from him and he's looking at the game differently than most players and managers. I can learn so much and I'm just trying to save it all in my head!!

            

Hale1021: What is the best advice Klopp have given to you?

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I think it's just when I made my debut "Do what you do in training and enjoy the moment." I did that in that game, but in all situations, I think of that moment. "Play how you train, no pressure, you'll be fine."

             

LukaForMvp77: How does it feel learning from some of the world's best players/coaches?

I'm really blessed that I can learn from them every day. It's harder for other boys my age who don't have that privilege. I've already noticed that I'm a better player being around them.

             

GottaBe: Favourite Klopp story?

I've gotten a few Klopp hugs, so each one of those is probably my favorite story.

             

Cuckiefinster: What does Klopp eat for breakfast?

To be honest, I don't know. He's the first one at Melwood. When I'm eating he's already in his office. We get omelettes a lot, so he's probably an omelette guy.

            

Shyam1: Who at the club has made the biggest impact on your life?

Virgil is one of them, of course it's easier with him. All of the lads are helping me and Pep Lijnders is also Dutch, so I can also speak to him.

            

RealMemeMan: Who's your favourite Dutch player of all time?

All time? There were a lot of good Dutch players. I watched more skills of players, like Ronaldinho. But now as I think about it, it's my teammate Virgil van Dijk.

             

BigChungus134: Who's your best friends on the team?

Sepp (van den Berg). Curtis Jones and then Virgil and WIjnaldum. Origi speaks Dutch too. So we're all pretty close.

              

Jnelson34: What is it like learning from Virgil everyday?

It's the same for me…a privilege. I'm blessed to be able to do that everyday. Virgil is the best defender in the world today. He's amazing with the ball. He speaks Dutch to me in training and I can understand things even better. I go to him after training and ask questions and he is willing to answer all my questions.

            

Adama_traore21: What did it feel like to win the Champions League?

I didn't *really* win it, so I can't say. I did get to travel to madrid and everything happened so quick in my first year. I didn't expect the CL win and it was amazing ot be around the club and the boys for that moment. I'll never forget it.

             

LANDEN1107: Would you rather win a World Cup or 3 Champions Leagues?

Probably a world cup. Winning for your country is just something different. The CL is a dream for every young player, but the World Cup is just different and you only get it once every four years. It's a harder trophy to acquire.

            

Madridynadamas77: Could you ever see yourself at a different club? *cough Real Madrid cough*

I'm very happy at Liverpool

              

Bht27: If you HAD to play for another Premier League team, which would you choose?

I'm happy at Liverpool. I can't say there's any other club I'd rather play at. Before joining Liverpool I just like watch the PL for the competition, but my love is for Liverpool now.

              

RufusPufus: Do you see yourself as a CB or a RB? 

I see myself as a right back at the moment. I'm a right back that can play center back. I'm not physically ready to player center back for a whole season. Maybe when I'm 25 I might be ready, but as I right back I like the attacking aspect. I have a vision in my game like Trent, where I can put people away. I think I can be somebody who sets up and assists other players.

             

ModricHazard: Who makes your best ever starting XI?

Allison

Trent -  Virgil    Varrane  Robo

Neymar - KDB - Frenkie -Mbappe

            Ronaldo  -  Messi

              

TheBamAdebayo_13: Who was your favourite team growing up?

Ajax. Growing up in Amsterdam, that's the only team to support. I lived close to the stadium and then when I was 8, I joined their academy. It just became my team.

              

Samwheezy: Who is your favourite person to play with in the first team and why?

Everyone is super talented at Liverpool, but if it's just one, I'll pick Bobby Firmino. It's because of the skills he has and he does the unexpected on every play.

              

Lildipper: Who's the hardest player to defend against at Liverpool?

I think it's Bobby or Sadio, I think. In the end, it's probably Bobby. He's a different type of striker and you never know what he's going to do. Sadio is so strong on the ball and so fast, very difficult to defend.

           

Teddy_rudd: Who would you say is the most underrated player on the team?

Gini is still pretty underrated compared to what they see on the outside. I think guys like Milner and Hendo are also really underrated. They are players who don't get the shine they deserve.

Tfahey1214: Who has the better chance of stopping Mane? You or Sepp (van den Berg)?

Of course it's me because I'm more used to playing right back and Sadio is a left winger. It's not that hard...

             

SkoogyDoo26: What's your favourite food?

I eat pasta the most. If I'm on a cheat day, it's fries with mayo. But when I'm in England I eat healthy.

I do not like Nandos. The fries are good with the sauce, but I don't like the chicken and other sides.

              

LFCYNWAREDS: Do you believe a loan to a Championship team is better for your career or do you think staying at the Academy with the occasional first-team games is best?

It's important that I play games on the highest level possible. It's hard to balance a few games at the highest level or a lot of games at a lower level. I have to figure out what's best for me and the right answer will present itself.

            

BenBlackmore: If there was an Amazon doc on Liverpool, which player would be the star?

I think Mo. He's always the star no matter what. He's the Egyptian King. Everything is Mo. When you come out of the stadium, everyone is chanting his name. They come from all around the world to come see him.

              

Voigts: What is the inspiration behind your tattoo sleeve?

I have my mom and dad's names on my hands. I have the three X's of Amsterday. I have my parents birthdays, I have my grandmas day of her passing. I have two playing cards, One K and one H from my initials. I also have FAMILY big on my arm and the rest is just fill in. To be honest I'm done for now. I'm still feeling the PAIN. I'm not in the mood now to stay in the shop for a few hours and feel the pain, but I will finish my right arm in a few years' time.

               

Aali8: What was it like to get your first goal vs. MK Dons?

It was a real nice moment because I never scored for Liverpool even at the academy. I'm a right back who doesn't score a lot. I wasn't able to score during my entire time at the academy so it was a relief that I finally socred. I was just really happy to find the bakc of the net.

              

Jnissenbaum: What are your goals for the upcoming season?

I'd like to play at the highest level possible as many games as possible. I know I'm ready to play men's football. No more youth anymore. I'd like to do the big work now. If I go on loan, 30 games. If I stay at Liverpool, maybe more like 10 games.

                

Silly_Dingus: Would you rather score 20 goals or get 20 assists?

20 goals, but I'm not a striker. I think people would appreciate it more if I scored 20.

              

Bht27: How much do you think your FIFA rating should increase next year? It's 62 right now.

I think it should go to 68 or 70. I just want silver. I'll be happy with silver.

                 

ThoughtfulBudah: If you could play any other professional sport, what would it be?

My dad played American football. He's a fan of the 49ers. I wanted to be a wide receiver but he said I wasn't explosive enough. He named me after Ki-Jana Carter.