Jurgen Klopp is set to make Danny Ings his backup striker for the rest of the season, showing his faith in the 25-year-old for the foreseeable future.
Young prospect Dominic Solanke has been limited to games off the bench and is yet to score a goal for Liverpool. On the other hand, Danny Ings has been hampered by injury but has made an impact when he has featured.
With Daniel Sturridge leaving the club on loan for West Brom, expect Danny Ings to be called on frequently as part of Klopp’s rotation policy and to make an impact off the bench.
During Klopp’s pre-match press conference ahead of the Huddersfield match, Klopp said:
“It would be funny if someone calls for Ingsy. I would love to respond! There’s no chance Ingsy is on the market tomorrow. Only if I’m unconscious!”
With Roberto Firmino easily holding down his first-team place, Ings will be expected to try and fight for Firmino’s spot and fend off Dominic Solanke. Ings will likely be used during the Premier League fixtures placed either side of the Reds upcoming Champions League fixtures against Porto.
Albeit, Ings has played just 16 games for Liverpool’s first team since signing for £6.5m in July of 2015. Suffering from two lengthy knee injuries, Ings has missed 85 games since October of 2015 which shows the trauma that the England international has been through. Many forget that Ings was one of England’s most promising strikers years ago, showing promise in Burnley’s promotion campaign in 2014 scoring 22 goals in the process – earning the Championship player of the year award.
Ings’ tenacity and work rate are easily his best qualities, making him a perfect fit for a Klopp pressing side. However, the boss has always been most impressed by his attitude and mental strength in coming back from two horrific injuries, back in October of 2016, he said: “If I was less sensitive I would say that is his job, but I am sensitive and I know that is not easy. He has taken the situation in a perfect way but it is all for him. He was a long time injured. He is fit now, everything is good and, with his attitude, all will be good in the end.”
The concept that Liverpool fans are struggling to come to terms with is letting a reliable goal-scorer in Daniel Sturridge go without bringing in a replacement of some sorts. Ultimately, no striker wants to be a backup for any side and you’ll struggle to find someone of similar quality to Roberto Firmino to fill that void. Look at Michy Batshuayi’s recent move to Borussia Dortmund as an example, at Chelsea the Belgian’s game time was limited despite impressing during his cameos. Leaving Chelsea, Batshuayi scores two goals on his debut against Koln and will take the place of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Contrasting to the Ings’ situation, proving himself as a backup striker and trying to fight for a first-team place in the wake of Sturridge’s departure might actually be the best opportunity at making it into the England squad for this summer’s World Cup. With this being a dream for Ings throughout his career, he will be determined to make the most of every opportunity that comes his way in Liverpool red.