Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp was in no doubt on Friday that Harry Wilson’s ineligibility against his side on Saturday was a positive thing.
The Wales midfielder joined Eddie Howe’s men on a season-long loan in August after featuring heavily for Klopp in pre-season.
Klopp was tipped to add the 22-year-old to his first-team squad this season, but instead opted to give Wilson first-team experience with Howe’s men.
And Wilson has delivered with six goals in 11 Premier League starts for the Cherries, who will not be allowed to feature against his parent club on Saturday.
“I am happy Harry Wilson cannot play tomorrow. Each free-kick is a proper threat. He has scored nice goals. It is good for him,” said Klopp, who revealed some minor injury concerns.
The Reds boss did though hint at some of the qualities that Wilson is missing and what Klopp is looking for from the Wrexham-born winger.
“But we have no doubt about Harry’s shooting abilities. His skills in that part of the game is incredible, world class for sure,” added Klopp.
“But he has gone to Bournemouth to improve the rest of his game – being involved, being decisive, being between the lines, using his speed and all that stuff and he makes big steps there. That’s really important.
“They are not on the best run but even there [against Spurs] he scored two goals, nice goals as well, not important enough at the end because they still lost but he kept the game going so good.”
Klopp was asked about his 23-man squad for the Club World Cup and his decision to put all his first-team squad in for the trip to Qatar.
“It is a really nice opportunity for the younger players If you grow above yourself, you can make the next step, I would love to be part of that game. I hope all the staff enjoy it. It is a wonderful stadium for them, great atmosphere. They can make a step,” added Klopp.
“We won the Arsenal game and we had to find a solution. It is not perfect, but it is the best. So we go to Qatar, play the game and try to win at Villa.
“We had to do it like this. I think it’s a really nice opportunity for the younger players. I know everyone thinks no chance but football is a wonderful.
“I would love to be part of that game to be honest. I hope they enjoy it, whatever happens. No pressure.”
Asked again if he considered splitting the squad, he emphatically replied: “No, I did not consider splitting the squad.”