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Wolves sign promising Dutch starlet for £13.5m – A smart investment to replace Doherty?

Why Ki-Jana Hoever would be a good long-term signing for Wolves

According to the Express and Star, Wolves have signed Liverpool defender Ki-Jana Hoever for a fee of £13.5million. Wolves will pay £9m initially for him, with add-ons potentially taking the fee to £13.5m

Profile

Ki-Jana Hoever started his youth career with AZ Alkmaar before joining Ajax’s academy as a highly-rated prospect back in 2014. Liverpool completed a deal to sign the teenager in the summer of 2018 and Hoever initially impressed for the Reds’ U-18 side.

The Dutch U-18 international was handed his senior professional debut in an FA Cup tie against Wolves back in January 2019, with Hoever setting a new record as Liverpool’s youngest debutant in the competition aged just 16. He also became one of the youngest goalscorers in the club’s history when he scored against MK Dons in an EFL Cup game.

Liverpool fans react as Ki-Jana Hoever is set to complete a £10m move to Wolves - The Boot Room
Ki-Jana Hoever has completed a move to Wolves (Getty Images)

Hoever, who signed a long-term professional contract with Liverpool last year, featured four times for Jurgen Klopp’s first-team at Anfield, earning rave reviews for his development.

Wolves would benefit from Hoever’s potential

Wolves were in need of some defensive reinforcements following the departure of Matt Doherty. Nuno Espirito Santo used Adama Traore in the right wing-back role in Wolves’ 2-0 win over Sheffield United on the opening day of the 2020-21 campaign but he’s only seen as a temporary solution.

To put things into perspective, Wolves need an immediate solution to end their crisis at right wing-back. A versatile defender like Ki-Jana Hoever presents an excellent long-term option for Nuno Santo’s side. 

The teenager has only made a handful of first-team appearances for Liverpool but his talent and potential can hardly be called into question. One might argue that Wolves need a more readymade replacement for Doherty but Hoever could potentially be a saviour for the Black County outfit.

Ki-Jana Hoever closer to World Cup glory after rocket from right-back - Liverpool FC - This Is Anfield
Hoever has made 4 first-team appearances for Liverpool so far (Getty Images)

The 18-year-old is equally comfortable playing as a centre-back and also as a right-back, a trait of versatility that should definitely appeal to Wolves. Hoever is still very much in his developmental phase, so Nuno Santo should try to mould him into a player capable of evolving into a regular starter in the right wing-back role.

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Verdict

Ki-Jana Hoever is a player with serious potential and Nuno Santo is right up there with the very best when it comes to getting the best out of young players, as evident from the rise of Ruben Neves, Diogo Jota, Pedro Neto, and several others at Molineux.

Whether or not he is capable of slotting immediately into Doherty’s shoes is something that remains to be seen but the Dutch sensation certainly ticks the box as an excellent long-term investment for Wolves.

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