Leeds win helped show Liverpool squad's strength in depth, says Simon Mignolet

Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet believes Tuesday's win over Championship side Leeds United in the quarter-finals of the EFL Cup demonstrated that the Reds have got ample strength in depth.

Leeds win helped show Liverpool squad's strength in depth, says Simon Mignolet
(Picture: Getty Images - John Powell)

Simon Mignolet believes Liverpool's 2-0 victory over Leeds United to reach the semi-finals of the EFL Cup served as evidence of the strength in depth within the club's first-team squad.

Jürgen Klopp made eight changes, including bringing Mignolet in for Loris Karius in goal, as the Reds played host to Championship outfit Leeds United.

But those alterations did not disturb Liverpool's unbeaten run, which they extended to 15 games in all competitions thanks to goals from Divock Origi and 17-year-old Ben Woodburn.

Sealing their progression to the last four for the third consecutive campaign, Mignolet insists that the battling win against a resilient Leeds side under Garry Monk shows Klopp has ample options available should he look to rotate.

Mignolet: Squad have shown we've got what it takes to step in when we're needed

The goalkeeper, who kept just his second clean sheet of the season, told Liverpool's official website that he was "pleased" with how the team performed and said they "deserved to go to the semis."

Mignolet look toward a "busy January coming up" and said that despite a hectic fixture schedule, they "love that" and "everybody in training is pushing."

He said that it's "not a cliché" and that Klopp's charges truly are "working hard" to ensure that they are "ready when there is an injury or a suspension."

The 28-year-old believes that "in the winter" the manager will "need the whole squad" and added: "Everybody's shown again that they can step in when needed and that's very important for the whole club to know."

The win was just the Belgium international's ninth appearance of the campaign and his first since a win over Tottenham Hotspur in the same competition in October.

Mignolet admitted that it is "not always easy when you know you're not playing" but vowed that he trains for himself in order to "stay fit and be ready."

But he acknowledged that "things can change very quickly" in football and so said that, he and his teammates "have to stay focused."

"That's what I try to do," continued the shot-stopper, saying that he tries "to stay professional" and take his opportunities when handed them, calling it "nice to play and get the victory also" against Leeds.

Reds' youngsters have proven that they've got 'a lot of talent', insists Mignolet

Among the much-changed eleven were several Academy prospects, with Woodburn coming off the bench to become the club's youngest ever goalscorer and Ovie Ejaria and Trent Alexander-Arnold both shining.

The latter set up the Reds' opening goal, delivering an excellent cross for Origi to stab home at the near post, and Mignolet said that he was impressed by the youngsters who featured.

He said that Woodburn will "rightly" dominate the headlines having "scored an important goal" which he will "remember for the rest of his life."

"Congratulations not only to him but all the young boys," Mignolet added, saying that they have come in to the team, taken their chance and shown that they have "got a lot of talent."

He noted that if the club's younger players "keep working the way they do" then they have "got a bright future ahead of them."

Goalkeeper says Liverpool have got 'something to put right' in League Cup

Tuesday night's other goalscorer, Origi, has now scored in back-to-back games as he looks to fill the void left behind with Philippe Coutinho out injured.

And Mignolet hopes not only that Origi can maintain his level of form, but that Liverpool can go one better in the League Cup than they did last term - when they lost to Manchester City in the final on penalties, when Mignolet played.

He hailed a "brilliant cross" from Alexander-Arnold and a "difficult finish from a tight angle" from Origi, saying that he "did well" and that he's "pleased for him" because his countryman has "been working hard also."

Mignolet said that strikers "live on goals" and has "scored two in two now" and called upon the striker to "keep it coming."

He added: "Last year we went to the final. Unfortunately, we lost in the cruellest of ways so we've got something to put right."

The 'keeper noted that they "still have to win the semis" before they can think about playing at Wembley Stadium or "anything like that", but said that "with the history we've got, we want to win trophies and the squad is very hungry for silverware."