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11th Jan 2024

Conor Bradley: Everything you need to know about Liverpool’s new star from Tyrone

Lee Costello

“What a boy. Wonderful.”

Conor Bradley has been thrust into the limelight in recent weeks as the Liverpool star has made his breakthrough in the pro game, so here is everything you need to know about the Tyrone native.

The young right back was injured in pre-season so hasn’t been given many opportunities to play for Liverpool this season after a successful loan spell with Bolton, however, with Trent Arnold-Alexander ruled out of the Carabao Cup semi-final against Fulham, Bradley is the only remaining fit full back in the squad.

With Andy Robertson and Kostas Tsimikas both picking up shoulder injuries, it meant that Joe Gomez, who would normally fill in at right back, has been playing in the vacant left back position, thus giving the young Irishman his opportunity.

Conor Bradley: Everything you need to know about Liverpool’s new star from Tyrone

So, who is this young flying defender that Jurgen Klopp has pu so much trust in?

Age: 21

From: Bradley is from a small rural village in County Tyrone called Aghyaran, probably best known as the home GAA club of All-Star full back and All-Ireland winner, Ronan McNamee.

Where did Liverpool find him: The youngster was playing for Northern Irish Premier team Dungannon Swifts when he was spotted by the Liverpool and asked to join their academy.

Will he play for Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland: Although Bradley comes from the nationalist community, and played Gaelic football growing up, he has already played matches for Northern Ireland and looks set to remain with them.

Debut: He made his debut for Liverpool in the Carabao Cup back in 2021, playing all 90 minutes during his team’s victory over Norwich.

Loan spell at Bolton: Bradley spent the 2022/23 season at Bolton in order to pick up some first team experience, and he impressed massively, scoring seven goals, and getting six assists in 52 appearances for the club. They also won the EFL Cup, reached the Play-offs and he picked up Player of the Year, Young Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year awards for his efforts.

What type of player is he: Klopp doesn’t have much interest in the traditional full back who mostly defends and attacks on the overlap, he much prefers a ball-player who can pick a pass, press from high up the pitch, and offer manic intensity throughout 90 minutes, all of which are skills that Bradley possess.

Jurgen Klopp on why Conor Bradley needed “somebody to drive him home” after Carabao Cup game

Conor Bradley

Klopp has revealed that after Bradley’s impressive display against Fulham in the Carabao Cup semi-final where Liverpool came from a goal behind to win 2-1, Bradley needed someone to “drive him home” afterwards.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, the Liverpool boss explained how the Irishman had given everything.

“A top boy, and today was pretty intense for him. Somebody has to drive him home, hopefully, because he’s sitting in the dressing room and doesn’t look great.

“He gave his absolute everything and it’s just so nice to see, it’s really so nice to see.”

Following his loan spell at Bolton fans were hoping to see more of Bradley this season, but an injury in pre-season meant that Klopp had to pick the right time.

Conor Bradley

“I was waiting for the moment we could give him the opportunity,” the German explained.

“I was already waiting for it, because when he got injured in pre-season my opinion about him was already here (signals high), then he was out for a pretty long time.”

“He will probably fall asleep in the dressing room! Exceptional, what a boy. Wonderful.

“Fantastic character, a real talent, top potential – and he’s in the right team, because everybody loves him, everybody respects him, everybody wants him to succeed.”

Against Fulham, he won all six of his tackles, made six ball recoveries and completed 88 percent of his passes.

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