ReactionJarell Quansah on 'unbelievable' McConnell debut, Van Dijk advice and more

By Liverpool FC


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Jarell Quansah hailed an 'unbelievable' full debut from James McConnell after Liverpool secured their place in the fifth round of the Emirates FA Cup with victory over Norwich City.

McConnell, 19, produced a performance to remember on his first Reds start at Anfield on Sunday, registering an assist for Curtis Jones' opening goal as Jürgen Klopp's side recorded an entertaining 5-2 win.

With Conor Bradley also excelling, creating two goals and finishing with the Player of the Match award, it was a good day for Liverpool's Academy graduates, and afterwards Quansah told of his pride.

"Again, Con [was] Man of the Match and two assists, it's unbelievable and I'm made up for him, to be honest," he said.

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"Seeing Macca get his first start after really excelling in pre-season really well and playing that No.6 role, which is new to him, to be fair, but to have him playing in front of me he was calm.

"I was almost telling him at times to keep it simple but he was doing stuff and I was like wow! He did some unbelievable stuff, including the assist, so I'm happy for him as well."

Liverpool's victory sets up a fifth-round tie at home to either Watford or Southampton, with Darwin Nunez, Diogo Jota, Virgil van Dijk and Ryan Gravenberch also on target against Norwich.

Van Dijk, in particular, was singled out by Quansah afterwards, with the Dutchman providing plenty of advice for the 21-year-old, who has made huge strides in what is his first full season in professional football.

"It's crazy, time just flies really," Quansah said. "Again, you just take every game as it comes so obviously playing with Virg, the best centre-back in the world, it's special and what he's doing with me, how he's helping me, it's inspiring."

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He continued: "It's everything. He talks to me, I watch him, throughout games you can probably hear him from the top of the Main Stand he's so loud, he just talks you through the game and you learn so much from him.

"Even before the game today he was helping me with the opposition striker [Ashley Barnes] and obviously he's played against him before. He's doing so much for me and I can't thank him enough really at this stage."

Quansah also reflected on the events of the last few days, with Klopp's announcement on Friday that he will step down as Liverpool manager at the end of the season.

"Definitely," Quansah said when asked if it had been a strange week. "But we are so focused and we want to do it for him.

"It give us that extra bit of motivation, not like we needed it already because it's always there, but to give him a good send-off would be great."

He added: "It's a special group we've got. Obviously we've had less numbers the last few weeks and certain players have had to step up, but slowly but surely we are seeing the quality that we have got.

"Like I say, it's special and I think we can do special things this year."

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This article has been automatically translated and, while all reasonable efforts have been made to ensure accuracy, some errors in translation are possible. Please refer to the original English-language version of the article for the official version.