Liverpool top academy list as Jurgen Klopp moves towards long-term goal

Liverpool sit at the top of the academy player charts in the Premier League according to one outlet. The Reds are moving towards a goal.

Transfermarkt put out some data on Thursday that highlighted the number of academy players in the Premier League right now. More specifically, they showed the top-10 teams to have used the most academy players this season.

Liverpool actually top the charts here. Jurgen Klopp has used nine players from the academy for a total of 393 combined matches. Chelsea have also used nine, though not as consistently - just 255 combined matches.

Manchester United are then third, having played seven academy graduates for 615 total matches. That latter figure is by far the most on the list, showing just how ingrained they are in United's first team.

Liverpool aren't quite at that point yet, with Trent Alexander-Arnold and Curtis Jones the only regular starters to have graduated. Harvey Elliott - the player pictured in Transfermarkt's Tweet - will almost certainly start more often over the second half of the season. Elliott, though, does bring into question what counts as an academy graduate.

Yes, he played in Liverpool's Under 21 team (then Under 23) but he also made his Premier League debut before signing for the Reds. Is he really an academy graduate then? It's up for debate.

Klopp has never kept it a secret that he wants as many graduates in his first-team squad as possible. Go back to the start of his reign and he talked about having 20 such players.

Now, there's still a long way to go before reaching that mark - and it's arguably just not realistic at the top of the Premier League - but the Reds have made enormous strides since Klopp took over. Back then, there were essentially no regular academy graduates in the first-team squad.

It's yet another area where the boss has worked wonders.

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