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Who is Liverpool goalkeeper Caoimhin Kelleher? The Irish wonderkid eager to make waves at Anfield

6:45 PM SGT 16/8/19
Caoimhin Kelleher Liverpool 2018-19
The Reds have one of the best goalkeepers in the world in their ranks, but they also have one eye on the future

The arrival of Alisson from Roma in a record £65m ($84m) transfer in 2018-19 means that Liverpool's chronic goalkeeper woes have finally been dealt with.

Jurgen Klopp has found a solution to a long-running problem in the form of the Brazil number one, whose prowess between the posts means he should make the position his own at Anfield in the coming years.

However, the Reds are also priming themselves for the future and featured in the ranks of the senior team this season is 20-year-old shot-stopper Caoimhin Kelleher, just a few years after his arrival on Merseyside.

Indeed, the youngster could well be called into action sooner rather than later, with injuries affecting Reds goalkeepers Alisson and Adrian.

For those unfamiliar with Kelleher, Goal brings you everything you need to know about him, including his previous clubs, experience and, crucially, how to pronounce his name!

Who is Caoimhin Kelleher?

Caoimhin Kelleher is a goalkeeper who plays for Premier League side Liverpool and the Republic of Ireland at international level.

He was born on November 23, 1998 in Cork, a city in the south of Ireland and came through the ranks of his local team Ringmahon Rangers.

Interestingly, he began his playing days for Ringmahon as a striker before making the transition to goalkeeper at the age of 14 after the team's original net-minder quit.

A former coach remarked in an interview with the Cork Evening Echo that Kelleher regularly scored 20 and 30 goals a season before donning the gloves permanently.

He excelled as a goalkeeper and soon earned national recognition, representing the Cork Youth League in nationwide tournaments before going on to play for Ireland at youth level.

Liverpool signed Kelleher from Ringmahon in the summer of 2015 and he has ascended from the Under-18 team into the Under-23 side, as well as becoming a member of the first-team squad.

The summer of 2018 saw the Cork native take a massive stride into the mind of Klopp, who brought the teenager along with the first team to compete in the International Champions Cup.

He replaced Loris Karius at half-time in a 2-1 win over Manchester City before keeping a clean sheet after coming off the bench in the 4-1 win against Manchester United. He also featured in a friendly victory over Blackburn Rovers.

Kelleher's progress was duly rewarded in August that year, when he put pen to paper on a long-term deal.

“I’ve been doing the same things but getting better every day," he told the club's official website

"Training at Melwood, you improve much more. Alisson and Simon and Kamil are here and we train to the highest level every day.”

At international level, he has represented the Boys in Green Under-17, Under-19 and Under-21 teams.

Having been included in the senior panel on a number of occasions, he will be aiming to put pressure on Darren Randolph in the coming years.

Kelleher hails from a football-loving family and his brother Fiacre is a former Ireland youth international who currently plays for Macclesfield Town, having previously played for Celtic and Oxford United.

What does Jurgen Klopp think of him?

While Klopp has a strong array of goalkeeper options at Anfield, it is clear that he rates Kelleher very highly.

"He is an outstanding talent. Outstanding," the German coach said shortly after Kelleher signed a new deal in 2018. 

"[He is] very cool with the ball, you saw that in pre-season when he played in front of 100,000 people, that he wasn't bothered about that which is a very important skill to have.

"For most of his youth he was an outfield player, he has fantastic reactions. If nothing serious happens, he will have a really fantastic future.

"I don't know how many really good goalkeepers that Ireland have but one more is never a big problem. I like him a lot and he will be in our squad."

How do you pronounce Caoimhin Kelleher's name?

Caoimhin is the Irish equivalent to the English name Kevin and it is pronounced ' Kwee-Veen'.

In some parts of Ireland the pronunciation of Caoimhin is slightly different, with ' Kee-Vin ' sometimes heard. 

Should Kelleher continue his ascent and carve out a career for himself in senior football, commentators are sure to have difficulties pronouncing his name.

Those unfamiliar with Irish names (which can be famously baffling to those outside of Ireland) may recoil aghast when confronted with the collection of letters forming the Liverpool starlet's first name.

You can hear Kelleher's pronunciation in the video above.

Caoimhin Kelleher's FIFA stats

Given his age and relative inexperience, Kelleher's FIFA 19 stats are not particularly eye-catching, but his potential ability suggests that he has what it takes to be a decent Premier League or Championship goalkeeper.

Caoimhin Kelleher's detailed FIFA 19 stats

Overall Rating DIV HAN KIC REF SPE POS
58 58 54 52 60 37 55

In FIFA 19, his overall rating is 58, with his reflexes deemed to be his strongest attribute at 60. Kelleher's diving is rated 58 and his positioning is slightly lower at 55, while his speed is clearly his weakest skill.

With a price tag of roughly £200k in the EA Sports game, he might well be considered a bargain buy, particularly if he manages to live up to expectations.