Michael Owen claims Neco Williams “will feel awful” after he was taken off at half-time in Liverpool’s 3-1 win over Brighton on Wednesday.
The teenager was replaced by Andy Robertson for the second period after he has been cautioned for a foul on Tariq Lamptey.
After the match, Klopp said: “I know football is like this. If you take a player off after 45 minutes then everybody thinks it’s not good for the player but actually I don’t care about this it was just that he had a yellow card and the situation on that side was that we didn’t protect him well enough.
“There was one or two times that they [Brighton] could really go through there so Neco it was his first professional game I cannot tell him don’t do a challenge anymore so that was the reason, the only reason.”
Ex-Liverpool striker Owen says Klopp made the right decision in replacing Williams but that he feels for Williams, who will be dealing with “negative thoughts” following the game.
He told Metro: “I knew it would be because of the yellow card and it’s understandable to be honest. If I was a manager and had a player on a yellow card so early I’d be thinking, especially when you’ve got someone like Robertson on the bench, you would be thinking like that.
“I just know how the young lad feels, he will feel awful tonight. Yes they’ve won but he will be thinking ‘could I have done more, manager brought me off. If I was playing so well surely he wouldn’t have brought me off, so he couldn’t have thought I was playing that well’.
“All these negative thoughts will be going through your head. But listen, it’s right early on in his career, he will have a good career, forget about this in no time and be in the team and be flying along.
“You just want everything to go perfectly on your first attempt and with the yellow card it has not gone quite that way.”