Former Liverpool star Emile Heskey has named the former Reds academy man who they expected to do in their side what Trent Alexander-Arnold has under Jurgen Klopp.
Homegrown star Alexander-Arnold has been a model of consistency since breaking through under the German’s guidance and has made the right-back slot his own with a number of consistent and top-quality performances.
This season alone, Alexander-Arnold has an incredible 13 assists to his name – with his displays down the right flank even catching Kylian Mbappe’s attention.
But Heskey insists that there was once another academy man at Melwood who was expected to have the same sort of impact – Jon Otsemobor.
Discussing where it all went wrong, Heskey said “I think he went to Norwich but when I arrived at Liverpool Jon Otsemobor was a right-back and he was flying. I don’t know what happened. He just tailed off.
“But he was good and had so much energy which you really needed for that position in those days because when you over-lapped a winger he wasn’t getting back for you – it was every man for himself back then.
“He was very good but never quite fulfilled it. You look at Trent and Robertson and he was just as good as them.”
Houllier also had more than one or two nice things to say about former Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier and claims the Frenchman laid the foundations for Rafa Benitez’s success.
“My relationship with Houllier was great and when people ask me who was the best manager I worked under I say it’s between him and Martin O’Neill,” Heskey added.
“Martin gave me my first opportunity and made sure I played without fear and allowed me to do what I love and what I’m capable of doing. Gerard Houllier put a bit more structure to that. He was brilliant in that sense.
“He was probably ahead of his time because the things he was doing then everyone is doing now. When it comes to nutrition and diet, he was doing that years ago and encouraging us but we weren’t mentally ‘there’ then.
“I know some older players who were there back then and they recognize now the things he was trying to get us to do but we were stuck in our ways.
“He was a bit before his time and he were there now he would see even more results that what he got. He laid the foundations because the large majority of the squad he took on he took to another level.”
In other Liverpool news, Klopp has been left facing a transfer decision after a Liverpool star terminated his loan deal.