Liverpool have confirmed that Kevin Stewart, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Ben Woodburn have all signed long-term contracts at the club.
Sources told ESPN FC on Monday that the trio were close to putting pen to paper on those deals, before the club officially announced the news on Tuesday morning.
Sources said that Stewart and Alexander-Arnold have signed contracts that will keep them at Liverpool until 2021, while 17-year-old Woodburn is now under a three-year deal — the maximum length for a player of his age.
Speaking to Liverpool’s official website, manager Jurgen Klopp said the new deals show the “clear pathway” from the Kirkby academy to the first-team setup.
“This is really positive news of course,” Klopp said. “And it’s brilliant we have acted decisively to show our intent with our young players.
“With Kev it is maybe a little different. He is of course established with us now and making a contribution as an important member of our first-team squad.
“Trent spends most of his time with the first team in this moment and is progressing each and every day. Ben is in those earlier stages and has a lot of developing to do still — but wow, what an exciting talent he is.
“The most important thing for us is the pathway to the first team. I think we have shown that with the work Alex [Inglethorpe] and his staff do at the academy, we offer a clear pathway to first-team football if the players embrace what is on offer for them. I cannot praise them [the academy] enough for the culture and environment they have there. It is perfect.
“The players know that it’s not just about ability: it’s application and a willingness to keep learning. All three of these players are big talents and are at different stages of their development, but it is development that is key and they must continue to learn and improve to achieve their full potential.
“News like today makes it exciting for me and the first-team staff that their development will continue with us at LFC.”
Stewart, 23, only signed a contract extension in February but has been rewarded by Klopp for his contribution to the first team when called upon.
Meanwhile, Alexander-Arnold and Woodburn have both been involved with the youth setup at the club since they were six years old and have been carefully managed by Klopp and the academy staff, who have extremely high hopes for the pair’s future.
Alexander-Arnold, 18, recently made his competitive first-team debut in the 2-1 EFL Cup win over Tottenham Hotspur last month, while Woodburn was promoted to Michael Beale’s under-23s side for the current campaign after bursting onto the scene for the senior side in preseason.
Support InfoStride News' Credible Journalism: Only credible journalism can guarantee a fair, accountable and transparent society, including democracy and government. It involves a lot of efforts and money. We need your support. Click here to Donate